Genesis 38:1 “And it came to pass at that time, that Judah went down from his brethren, and turned in to a certain Adullamite, whose name was Hirah.”
Sometimes, we talk about the heroes of the faith, maybe based on Hebrews 11. But as I read the Bible, I am amazed at how flawed pretty much all of these “heroes” are.
In Genesis 38 we find another one – Judah, the one through whom the “Lion of the tribe of Judah” will come. Yet, in this passage, he distances himself from his family, befriends a Canaanite, sees and marries another Canaanite, and has three sons.
His first two sons are wicked and selfish – so bad that God has to kill them. He lacks the integrity to give his third son to his widowed daughter-in-law Tamar, according to the Levirate custom. He then commits adultery with his disguised daughter-in-law and hypocritically intends to burn her for her sin.
When Tamar gives birth to two twin sons by him, Judah is shown that God’s plan will continue and his seed will prevail even though Judah by his sin put it greatly at risk.
From this, we see the destructiveness of sin and the grace of God. Judah made some very poor choices that negatively impacted him, yet God in His grace chose to use Him, despite his failures. And that is really the theme of every story – man is a failure; God is the hero! May we glorify God for how He uses weak, flawed, foolish people like Judah and like us.