05/17/18 Family Trees

READING: 1 Chronicles 23-26

“But Nadab and Abihu died before their father.”

1 Chronicles 24:2

I wonder what all of us might find in our family tree. To be honest, I suspect that the last name “Lawless” shows that somewhere in my ancestry was someone who was less than law-abiding. On the other hand, I know that in my background on both sides of my family were folks who served the Lord. For most of us, genealogical lines lead us both to scoundrels and saints.

Today’s reading is a listing of the various people and offices who would help Solomon build the temple and lead worship there. In the midst of the description of the divisions of the priests, though, are these two sentences about Aaron’s sons: “The divisions of the descendants of Aaron were as follows: Aaron’s sons were Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar. But Nadab and Abihu died before their father, and they had no sons, so Eleazar and Ithamar served as priests” (1 Chron. 24:1-2). The writer of Chronicles only briefly mentions the names of Nadab and Abihu, and he omits details that most Jewish readers would have already known: God judged them with death when they offered “unauthorized fire” in the early days of the sacrificial system (Lev. 10:1-3). Through this judgment, God had warned all the priests to follow His directions precisely.

So, in their family tree was an undeniable example of the wrath of God upon sinful leaders. One would hope that they would have always heeded the warning, but such was not always the case. Somehow, we simply don’t learn what we should from the disobedience of others and the corresponding results of their sin.   


  • Pray for any loved ones who are living outside the will of God today.
  • Don’t miss any lessons you might learn from the failure of others.

PRAYER:  “Help me, Lord, to turn to You and trust You to carry out justice.” 

TOMORROW'S READING: Psalms 131, 138-139, 143-145

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