Genesis 10:15–32 (NKJV)
Canaan begot Sidon his firstborn, and Heth; the Jebusite, the Amorite, and the Girgashite; the Hivite, the Arkite, and the Sinite; the Arvadite, the Zemarite, and the Hamathite. Afterward the families of the Canaanites were dispersed. And the border of the Canaanites was from Sidon as you go toward Gerar, as far as Gaza; then as you go toward Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboiim, as far as Lasha. These were the sons of Ham, according to their families, according to their languages, in their lands and in their nations.
And children were born also to Shem, the father of all the children of Eber, the brother of Japheth the elder. The sons of Shem were Elam, Asshur, Arphaxad, Lud, and Aram. The sons of Aramwere Uz, Hul, Gether, and Mash. Arphaxad begot Salah, and Salah begot Eber. To Eber were born two sons: the name of one was Peleg, for in his days the earth was divided; and his brother’s name was Joktan. Joktan begot Almodad, Sheleph, Hazarmaveth, Jerah, Hadoram, Uzal, Diklah, Obal, Abimael, Sheba, Ophir, Havilah, and Jobab. All these were the sons of Joktan. And their dwelling place was from Mesha as you go toward Sephar, the mountain of the east. These were the sons of Shem, according to their families, according to their languages, in their lands, according to their nations.
These were the families of the sons of Noah, according to their generations, in their nations; and from these the nations were divided on the earth after the flood.
The passage seems to zoom in on Eber—Shem’s great-grandson (or great-great-grandson). Eber is mentioned even before Shem’s sons are named.
This part of Genesis is tracing the genealogy from Noah to Abraham, and Eber is a key stopover along the way. Eber is the root word of “Hebrew.” This text shows Eber as the great-grandson of Shem. However, the Septuagint has Arphaxad begetting Cainan and Cainan begetting Salah, making Eber Shem’s great-great-grandson. That agrees with Luke 3:36.
Extra generations are no big deal in Hebrew genealogies. That’s why this passage calls Shem, “the father of all the children of Eber.” Some translations render this as, “the ancestor of all the children of Eber.”
That’s okay, but not literal. The Hebrew word used has the same root as “abba” (father).
Yesterday’s DEEP raised the issue of seeking humility. But what is it, really?
In the chapter in Mere Christianity titled “The Great Sin”, CS Lewis describes humility as the opposite of pride. Of pride he says, “Greed will make a man want money … but only up to a point. … Pride makes a man with [$1 million] a year want [$2 million].” My favorite illustration of this comes from Kurt Vonnegut. He tells of saying to his pal, Joseph Heller, at a party given by a billionaire, that their host had made more money yesterday than Heller made from his famous novel, Catch-22, over its entire history.
Heller is alleged to have replied, “Yes, but I have something he’ll never have — enough.”
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These weekday DEEPs are written by Mike Slay. Saturdays' by Matt Richardson. Subscribe here: https://www.ailbe.org/resources/community
The weekly study guides, which include questions for discussion or meditation, are here: https://www.ailbe.org/resources/itemlist/category/91-deep-studies
Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. ESV stands for the English Standard Version. © Copyright 2001 by Crossway. Used by permission. All rights reserved. NIV stands for The Holy Bible, New International Version®. © Copyright 1973 by International Bible Society. Used by permission. All rights reserved. NASB stands for the New American Standard Bible. Used by permission. All rights reserved. KJV stands for the King James Version.