This week of study will look very different from last week as we examine less context/history and more of Tamar’s attributes character in our readings. I’m praying that you are able to see yourself in all aspects of Tamar’s story!
Today will focus on one chapter. One soul. One girl that was used to bring hope to the world. Let’s start by reading the complete account of Tamar in Genesis 38.
1. Let’s review. Who is Judah to Tamar? Tracing back in our study from last week, who did Judah ultimately descend from?
2. Note the first sentence of the chapter... who did Judah leave to go start this new life? Why is this statement important?
3. Who did Judah marry and was she of the chosen people of God? (NOTE: the name in the novelette is the complete name of this woman)
4. What main controversy do we see again and again when God’s people married women from tribes who were considered to be the enemies of God? (here’s a freebie for you: there’s a reason God warns us about connecting ourselves with non-believers!)
5. Why do you think that the main details in the beginning of this chapter are focused on the birth of sons for Judah? And what was Tamar chosen to do for Judah’s family?
Even the first few verses (1-6) are rich with drama, choices, consequences, and the emotional weight of Tamar’s plight. Let’s just focus on one attribute of Tamar that we find here... she was chosen.
In this time period, the continuation of the family line meant everything. It was life or death to the head of the household and to the woman chosen to produce male offspring. Now that’s some pressure! Judah chose Tamar and entrusted his lineage to her. That’s a lot for a 14 year old girl! Poor thing! So how does this have anything to do with us?
CONNECT: Although you and I are not chosen to bear male babies in order to keep the family name going (whew!), we are chosen by the headship of Christ Jesus to be bearers of His salvation message. Tamar’s story directly relates to the coming Messiah, Jesus.
Let’s finish by reading 2 Corinthians 5:20.
Last question for today... You and I were once the very enemies of God. WHY did he bring us into His family?
And there you have it. Life’s purpose. Its not a secret to be uncovered. It’s right there in God’s covenant word for us. Yes, it’s a huge and daunting task, but we have also received the greatest of gift of all from our Father. One who will come alongside us as our righteousness and strength - Jesus Christ.
Press on today as you consider your calling. I would venture to say that once you grasp this, life becomes both very simple and hard!. It sure did for Tamar! We’ll talk through this in the next couple of days. I can’t wait to visit her again tomorrow with you!