Individuals are important!
Scripture reading for April 17th: 1st Chronicles 1-9
The first nine chapters of 1st Chronicles offers a challenge as to what we might learn from pronouncing hundreds of names, many that are unfamiliar to us. Chronicles is written from the view of the priesthood and some think that Ezra helped compile this record. One thing that we might note is that Chronicles begins with Adam and gives a record of descendants right up to the exile in 586 BC. This record is basically repeated again with additions right up to the time of Christ in Luke’s Gospel. (Luke 3:23-37) God seems to be reminding us of our genealogy. We can trace it back to Adam and Eve!
Another thing to note is that God considers individuals important. He knows our name and lists all these people by name. He also recorded some comments about certain individuals who were noteworthy. Of the sons of Judah, Er, the first-born, is noted as being wicked and the Lord put him to death. (2Chronicles 2:3) Another man, Hezron, married at 60 years of age and had a son, Segub. (2nd Chronicles 2:21) Evidently it was unusual to marry so late! In 2nd Chronicles 4:9-10, Jabez cried out to the Lord for his blessing and an enlarged territory. Jabez asked to have God’s hand with him and to be free from pain. God answered his prayer! That’s a good thing to note and an encouragement to us.
In the last section of this genealogy, there is a record of the sons of Levi. The Levite families had assigned jobs to do in the temple and for the ministry to the Lord. The house of Merari, for instance, was assigned to be musicians ministering before the tabernacle from the time of David. (2nd Chronicles 6:31-32) Aaron and his descendants offered the sacrifices in the most holy place. (2nd Chronicles 6:49) A later record in 2nd Chronicles 9:17-27 describes Levites who returned from captivity in Babylon to be gatekeepers in Jerusalem and the house of the Lord. A single man, Mattithiah, was a Levite who was put in charge of baking bread for the tabernacle. That was his primary job.
What do we learn from all this detail? God is a God of order. He assigns jobs to His people according to their abilities and His needs. He knows each by name and makes note of those who do well as well as those who mess up. Each person is important and the job they are assigned is significant. Take time today to thank God for the gifts He has given you. Ask Him to show you the significance of your work and offer your gifts to Him to use for His glory! God is keeping a record for Heaven!