Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Brothers attempt murder against their brother
Jacob's favorite son was Joseph, and MAN did he show it. He actually made Joseph a coat with many colors. Jacob's favor was so obvious to his other sons, that they actually got jealous. But for some reason, they hated Joseph. I have to say they are misdirecting their anger; they should be angry at their father, not their brother.
Anyways, the brothers conspire to kill Joseph. They ambush him, take his multi-colored coat, and then throw him into a well to starve and die. The brothers then slaughter one of Joseph's goats and rub the jacket in the blood. They return to pops with the bloody and ripped-up coat, and Jacob naturally feels really, really bad.
Sold into slavery
But Joseph isn't dead yet. Soon, a group of Midianites happen by and find him in the well. They take him out and basically enslave him. He is then sold to the Egyptians, but it is unclear as to how he got to Egypt, because this chapter has two conflicting accounts. Genesis 37:28 says that the Midianites sell Joseph to Ishmaelites for 20 shekels, and then the Ishmaelites sell him to the Egyptians. But Genesis 37:36 says that the Midianites take Joseph to Egypt and sell him to the Egyptians.
A story of in-law incest, wasted semen and godly slaughter
Okay, ready for a crazy story of in-law incest, semen wasting, and wanton murder by the God Himself?
Judah is one of Jacob's kids, and one of the co-conspirators of Joseph's ambush. It was actually Judah's idea to throw Joseph in a well, rather than butcher the guy. So from that deduce that he was a somewhat reasonable guy, despite throwing his brother into a well with the intent to kill him.
Anyways, Judah sees a Canaanite chick and maybe marries her. Not sure. One thing is for sure, they have sex. And she gives birth to three sons (ofcourse); named Er, Onan, and Shelah. Judah eventually (there's no sense of time passing, but I'm guessing a decade later ...) find Er a wife named Tamar. For some
reason, the Creator of the Universe doesn't like Er, and He kills him, leaving Tamar as a widow.
Judah tells Onan to have sex with Tamar, as he is the brother-in-law. Yea, that doesn't right. God kills Tamar's husband for no reason (it says that God found Er to be wicked), and now her husband's brother has to have sex with her??? Doesn't she have a say in this?
So Onan has sex with her, but feels awkward because he knows the offspring will not be considered his. He pulls out and jizzes on the ground. If I were Onan, I would simply feel guilty for having sex with my brother's wife; Onan feels awkward because the offspring would technically be his dead brother's; not his. At the very least, he doesn't have his priorities straight.
God disapproves of Onan's wanton semen-spilling, and so the Almighty and Omniscient One kills Onan. Judah then tells Tamar to hang out around the house until the youngest son (Shelah) grows up. During her stay, Judah's wife dies and he goes to hang out with some friends to be comforted. While he's gone, Tamar takes off her widow garments (widows had special clothes?) and puts on a veil, and sits out in an open place.
When Judah comes back, he sees her but doesn't know that she is his daughter-in-law. "Hey, can I come inside you?" he asks. Very romantic, isn't he? He kind of reminds me of Russel Crowe's character in A Beautiful Mind. To be fair, Judah thought she was a whore. For payment, he gives Tamar his staff, bracelets, and a signet.
Judah later finds out that it was Tamar who was acting like a whore, and Judah comes to logical conclusion during this time period: "Let's burn her!"
But she brings out the staff, bracelets, and a signet, and says to Judah, "Hey, I'm pregnant with YOUR kid, buddy."
This has an effect on the Bronze Age male, and he lets her go. She later gives birth to twins, one of whom, Pharez, is the ancestor of Jesus himself!
Next time I'll talk about how the Egyptian Pharoah's wife begins to dig Joseph.
Posted by Andy at 8:26 AM