1 Chronicles 2
We have now come to what was principally intended, the register of the
children of Israel, that distinguished people, that were to "dwell
alone, and not be reckoned among the nations." Here we have,
I. The names of the twelve sons of Israel,
1 Chronicles 2:1,2.
II. An account of the tribe of Judah, which has the precedency, not so
much for the sake of David as for the sake of the Son of David, our
Lord, who sprang out of Judah,
1. The first descendants from Judah, down to Jesse,
1 Chronicles 2:3-12.
2. The children of Jesse,
1 Chronicles 2:13-17.
3. The posterity of Hezron, not only through Ram, from whom David
came, but through Caleb
(1 Chronicles 2:18-20),
(1 Chronicles 2:21-24),
(1 Chronicles 2:25-33,
and so to
1 Chronicles 2:34-41),
and more by Caleb
(1 Chronicles 2:42-49),
with the family of Caleb the son of Hur,
1 Chronicles 2:50-55.
The best exposition we can have of this and the following chapters, and
which will give the clearest view of them, is found in those
genealogical tables which were published with some of the first
impressions of the last English Bible about 100 years ago, and
continued for some time; and it is a pity but they were revived in some
of our later editions, for they are of great use to those who
diligently search the scriptures. They are said to be drawn up by that
great master in scripture-learning, Mr. Hugh Broughton. We meet with
them sometimes in old Bibles.
1 These are the sons of Israel; Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and
Judah, Issachar, and Zebulun,
2 Dan, Joseph, and Benjamin, Naphtali, Gad, and Asher.
3 The sons of Judah; Er, and Onan, and Shelah: which three
were born unto him of the daughter of Shua the Canaanitess. And
Er, the firstborn of Judah, was evil in the sight of the LORD;
and he slew him.
4 And Tamar his daughter in law bare him Pharez and Zerah. All
the sons of Judah were five.
5 The sons of Pharez; Hezron, and Hamul.
6 And the sons of Zerah; Zimri, and Ethan, and Heman, and
Calcol, and Dara: five of them in all.
7 And the sons of Carmi; Achar, the troubler of Israel, who
transgressed in the thing accursed.
8 And the sons of Ethan; Azariah.
9 The sons also of Hezron, that were born unto him; Jerahmeel,
and Ram, and Chelubai.
10 And Ram begat Amminadab; and Amminadab begat Nahshon, prince
of the children of Judah;
11 And Nahshon begat Salma, and Salma begat Boaz,
12 And Boaz begat Obed, and Obed begat Jesse,
13 And Jesse begat his firstborn Eliab, and Abinadab the
second, and Shimma the third,
14 Nethaneel the fourth, Raddai the fifth,
15 Ozem the sixth, David the seventh:
16 Whose sisters were Zeruiah, and Abigail. And the sons of
Zeruiah; Abishai, and Joab, and Asahel, three.
17 And Abigail bare Amasa: and the father of Amasa was Jether
I. The family of Jacob. His twelve sons are here named, that
illustrious number so often celebrated almost throughout the whole
Bible, from the first to the last book of it. At every turn we meet
with the twelve tribes that descended from these twelve patriarchs. The
personal character of several of them was none of the best (the first
four were much blemished), and yet the covenant was entailed on their
seed; for it was of grace, free grace, that it was said, Jacob have
I loved--not of works, lest any man should boast.
II. The family of Judah. That tribe was most praised, most increased,
and most dignified, of any of the tribes, and therefore the genealogy
of it is the first and largest of them all. In the account here given
of the first branches of that illustrious tree, of which Christ was to
be the top branch, we meet,
1. With some that were very bad. Here is Er, Judah's eldest son, that
was evil in the sight of the Lord, and was cut off, in the
beginning of his days, by a stroke of divine vengeance: The Lord
1 Chronicles 2:3.
His next brother, Onan, was no better, and fared no better. Here is
Tamar, with whom Judah, her father-in-law, committed incest,
1 Chronicles 2:4.
And here is Achan, called Achar--a troubler, that troubled
Israel by taking of the accursed thing,
1 Chronicles 2:7.
Note, The best and most honourable families may have those belonging to
them that are blemishes.
2. With some that were very wise and good, as Heman and Ethan, Calcol
and Dara, who were not perhaps the immediate sons of Zerah, but
descendants from him, and are named because they were the glory of
their father's house; for, when the Holy Ghost would magnify the wisdom
of Solomon, he declares him wiser than these four men, who, though the
sons of Mahol, are called Ezrahites, from Zerah,
1 Kings 4:31.
That four brothers should be eminent for wisdom and grace was a rare
3. With some that were very great, as Nahshon, who was prince of the
tribe of Judah when the camp of Israel was formed in the wilderness,
and so led the van in that glorious march, and Salman, or Salmon, who
was in that post of honour when they entered into Canaan,
1 Chronicles 2:10,11.
III. The family of Jesse, of which a particularly account is kept for
the sake of David, and the Son of David, who is a rod out of the
stem of Jesse,
Hence it appears that David was a seventh son, and that his three great
commanders, Joab, Abishai, and Asahel, were the sons of one of his
sisters, and Amasa of another. Three of the four went down slain to the
pit, though they were the terror of the mighty.
18 And Caleb the son of Hezron begat children of Azubah his
wife, and of Jerioth: her sons are these; Jesher, and Shobab,
19 And when Azubah was dead, Caleb took unto him Ephrath, which
bare him Hur.
20 And Hur begat Uri, and Uri begat Bezaleel.
21 And afterward Hezron went in to the daughter of Machir the
father of Gilead, whom he married when he was threescore years
old; and she bare him Segub.
22 And Segub begat Jair, who had three and twenty cities in the
land of Gilead.
23 And he took Geshur, and Aram, with the towns of Jair, from
them, with Kenath, and the towns thereof, even threescore
cities. All these belonged to the sons of Machir the father of
24 And after that Hezron was dead in Calebephratah, then Abiah
Hezron's wife bare him Ashur the father of Tekoa.
25 And the sons of Jerahmeel the firstborn of Hezron were, Ram
the firstborn, and Bunah, and Oren, and Ozem, and Ahijah.
26 Jerahmeel had also another wife, whose name was Atarah;
she was the mother of Onam.
27 And the sons of Ram the firstborn of Jerahmeel were, Maaz,
and Jamin, and Eker.
28 And the sons of Onam were, Shammai, and Jada. And the sons
of Shammai; Nadab, and Abishur.
29 And the name of the wife of Abishur was Abihail, and she
bare him Ahban, and Molid.
30 And the sons of Nadab; Seled, and Appaim: but Seled died
31 And the sons of Appaim; Ishi. And the sons of Ishi; Sheshan.
And the children of Sheshan; Ahlai.
32 And the sons of Jada the brother of Shammai; Jether, and
Jonathan: and Jether died without children.
33 And the sons of Jonathan; Peleth, and Zaza. These were the
sons of Jerahmeel.
34 Now Sheshan had no sons, but daughters. And Sheshan had a
servant, an Egyptian, whose name was Jarha.
35 And Sheshan gave his daughter to Jarha his servant to wife;
and she bare him Attai.
36 And Attai begat Nathan, and Nathan begat Zabad,
37 And Zabad begat Ephlal, and Ephlal begat Obed,
38 And Obed begat Jehu, and Jehu begat Azariah,
39 And Azariah begat Helez, and Helez begat Eleasah,
40 And Eleasah begat Sisamai, and Sisamai begat Shallum,
41 And Shallum begat Jekamiah, and Jekamiah begat Elishama.
42 Now the sons of Caleb the brother of Jerahmeel were, Mesha
his firstborn, which was the father of Ziph; and the sons of
Mareshah the father of Hebron.
43 And the sons of Hebron; Korah, and Tappuah, and Rekem, and
44 And Shema begat Raham, the father of Jorkoam: and Rekem
45 And the son of Shammai was Maon: and Maon was the father
46 And Ephah, Caleb's concubine, bare Haran, and Moza, and
Gazez: and Haran begat Gazez.
47 And the sons of Jahdai; Regem, and Jotham, and Geshan, and
Pelet, and Ephah, and Shaaph.
48 Maachah, Caleb's concubine, bare Sheber, and Tirhanah.
49 She bare also Shaaph the father of Madmannah, Sheva the
father of Machbenah, and the father of Gibea: and the daughter of
Caleb was Achsah.
50 These were the sons of Caleb the son of Hur, the firstborn
of Ephratah; Shobal the father of Kirjath-jearim,
51 Salma the father of Bethlehem, Hareph the father of
52 And Shobal the father of Kirjath-jearim had sons; Haroeh,
and half of the Manahethites.
53 And the families of Kirjath-jearim; the Ithrites, and the
Puhites, and the Shumathites, and the Mishraites; of them came
the Zareathites, and the Eshtaulites.
54 The sons of Salma; Bethlehem, and the Netophathites,
Ataroth, the house of Joab, and half of the Manahethites, the
55 And the families of the scribes which dwelt at Jabez; the
Tirathites, the Shimeathites, and Suchathites. These are the
Kenites that came of Hemath, the father of the house of Rechab.
The persons mentioned in the former paragraph are most of them such as
we read of, and most of them such as we read much of, in other
scriptures; but very few of those to whom this paragraph relates are
mentioned any where else. It should seem, the tribe of Judah were more
full and exact in their genealogies than any other of the tribes, in
which we must acknowledge a special providence, for the clearing of the
genealogy of Christ.
1. Here we find Bezaleel, who was head-workman in building the
2. Hezron, who was the son of Pharez
(1 Chronicles 2:5),
was the father of all this progeny, his sons, Caleb and Jerahmeel,
being very fruitful, and he himself likewise, even in his old age, for
he left his wife pregnant when he died,
1 Chronicles 2:24.
This Hezron was one of the seventy that went down with Jacob into
There his family thus increased, as other oppressed families there did.
We cannot but suppose that he died during the Israelites' bondage in
Egypt; and yet it is here said he died in Caleb-Ephratah (that is,
Bethlehem), in the land of Canaan,
1 Chronicles 2:24.
Perhaps, though the body of the people continued in Egypt, yet some
that were more active than the rest, at least before their bondage came
to be extreme, visited Canaan sometimes and got footing there, though
afterwards they lost it. The achievements of Jair, here mentioned
(1 Chronicles 2:22,23),
we had an account of in
and, it is supposed, they were long after the conquest of Canaan. The
Jews say, Hezron married his third wife when he was sixty years old
(1 Chronicles 2:21),
and another afterwards
(1 Chronicles 2:24),
because he had a great desire of posterity in the family of Pharez,
from whom the Messiah was to descend.
3. Here is mention of one that died without children
(1 Chronicles 2:30),
(1 Chronicles 2:32),
and of one that had no sons, but daughters,
1 Chronicles 2:34.
Let those that are in any of these ways afflicted not think their case
new or singular. Providence orders these affairs of families by an
incontestable sovereignty, as pleaseth him, giving children, or
withholding them, or giving all of one sex. He is not bound to please
us, but we are bound to acquiesce in his good pleasure. To those that
love him he will himself be better than ten sons, and give them in his
house a place and a name better than of sons and daughters. Let not
those therefore that are written childless envy the families that are
built up and replenished. Shall our eye be evil because God's is good?
4. Here is mention of one who had an only daughter, and married her to
his servant an Egyptian,
1 Chronicles 2:34,35.
If it be mentioned to his praise, we must suppose that this Egyptian
was proselyted to the Jewish religion and that he was very eminent for
wisdom and virtue, otherwise it would not have become a true-born
Israelite to match a daughter to him, especially an only daughter. If
Egyptians become converts, and servants do worthily, neither their
parentage nor their servitude should be a bar to their preferment. Such
a one this Egyptian servant might be that she who married him might
live as happily with him as if she had married one of the rulers of her
5. The pedigree of several of these terminates, not in a person, but in
a place or country, as one is said to be the father of
(1 Chronicles 2:50),
another of Bethlehem
(1 Chronicles 2:51),
which was afterwards David's city, because these places fell to their
lot in the division of the land.
6. Here are some that are said to be families of scribes
(1 Chronicles 2:55),
such as kept up learning in their family, especially
scripture-learning, and taught the people the good knowledge of God.
Among all these great families we are glad to find some that were
families of scribes. Would to God that all the Lord's people were
prophets--all the families of Israel families of scribes, well
instructed to the kingdom of heaven, and able to bring out of their
treasury things new and old!