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.