Genesis 38: Human Sin Does Not Limit God

*These notes come from Bob Deffinbaugh’s study on Genesis 38 at
  • Chapter 38 abruptly interrupts the flow of thought but is essential because 37 tells us how Joseph/Israel wound up in Egypt and 38 tells us why this Egyptian sojourn was necessary.
  • Judah married a Canaanite based off physical attraction
  • This text is often used as a basis for banning birth control
    • birth control is only wrong if motivated by self-seeking and disobedience
  • Burning Tamar was unusually severe and more than the law demanded. She should have been stoned
  • Racial bigotry kept God’s people pure – Egyptians would not mix with them
  • Israel’s roots that they were so proud of were indeed rotten
  • God would prefer for us to follow the right path but still uses our disobedience to accomplish His will
  • God is not limited by man’s sinfulness
  • We must follow God’s will to bring others to God
  • It is the breakdown of family that threatens God’s purpose

*Link to study on the rest of the chapters in Genesis


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