History of a nation: the foundation of the priesthood

Cover to Cover

Reading: 1 Chronicles 4:1-6:47

Focus: 1 Chronicles 6:1-30

In the beginning of Chronicles there is a genealogy which sets the historical basis of the kings. Interestingly, there is also another genealogy, but this time tracing the historical basis of the priesthood and those that serve in God’s temple. The genealogy traces all the way from Levi, the 3rd son of Jacob (or Israel), through their various descendants. A quick read over the genealogy may miss some key elements, particularly, given the purpose of Chronicles of recording the national history of Israel.

Each name tells a story, but particular names should jump out, such as: Aaron, Moses, Miriam, Eleazar, Elkanah and Samuel…just to name a few. These genealogies validate not only the present context of Chronicles but also the past history and events. The choosing of the tribe of Levi to serve as priests and temple workers, the election of Aaron and Moses to lead the people in the period of the Exodus, the mention of an unknown, Elkanah, who was the father of Samuel, THE Samuel.

In the midst of unknown, somewhat insignificant names, the story that is untold is the passing on of tradition, history and principles by each person onto the next generation. As you read Samuel’s story, you realise that it started with the faithfulness of his mother which led to his life service to God. Without a family dedicated to God, it was not likely that Hannah would have been willing to release her son, Samuel, into His service.

It highlights the importance for us to pass on our faith, our foundations and our heritage to the generations that proceed us. We may not know what will happen in the generations to come, but it way well be that through our faithfulness that a generation will be a powerful force used for the purpose of God’s kingdom.

Next Reading: 1 Chronicles 6:48-8:40