Genesis 38:1
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1  About that time Yehuda left his brothers and camped near a certain Adullamite whose name was Hirah.

vai-HEE ba-AYT ha-HEE va-YAY-red y’-hu-DAH may-AYT e-KHAV va-YAYT ad EESH a-du-la-MEE ush-MO khee-RAH

א  וַיְהִי בָּעֵת הַהִוא וַיֵּרֶד יְהוּדָה מֵאֵת אֶחָיו וַיֵּט עַד־אִישׁ עֲדֻלָּמִי וּשְׁמוֹ חִירָה׃

 38:1   Yehuda left his brothers

Though the story of Yehuda and his daughter-in-law Tamar seems to interrupt the narrative of the Yosef stories, Jewish tradition teaches that its placement here is deliberate. In beautiful shorthand, the Midrash explains the connection: “While the tribes were busy with the sale of Yosef; Reuven, Yosef and Yaakov were busy with their sackcloth and mourning; Yehuda was busy taking a wife; and God was busy creating the light of the Mashiach.” Like a puppet master operating behind the scenes and hidden from view, Hashem is pulling the strings and directing events without the knowledge or under­standing of the participants themselves. From the union between Yehuda and Tamar, the Davidic dynasty and ultimately the Mashiach himself would emerge. Precisely when life seems to be completely unraveling, Hashem is directing events with His infinite wisdom, and is carefully nurturing our redemption.

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Genesis 38
Genesis 39

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  • "For indeed, the union of Judah and Tamar produced the Davidic dynasty and ultimately the Messiah himself".
    I'm a little confused with this statement. I was under the impression Judaism held that the Messiah had not yet come. I know David has come and gone. However, both "Davidic dynasty" and "the Messiah Himself" are characterized in the past tense–"produced". If the Messiah has already come, who is He?

  • I have a plaque on my wall with the poem, "Footsteps" on it. The poem tells of a man looking back on his walk with the Lord. In both the beginning and the end, he sees two pairs of footprints in the sand. In the middle, he sees only one set of prints. The man asks Elohim why there was only one set of prints when going through the worst time of his life. That was, Adonai said, was when I was carrying you. When I read the line, "God ensures that precisely when life seems to be unraveling, He is carefully nurturing our redemption", I think of this poem.

    • I know the poem, we will never know this side of heaven the countless times we have been carried in Hashem's hand.

Genesis 38:1

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