Questions for Bible Study: 1 Chronicles 1-4
1 Chronicles 1-4
Israel Finkelstein of Tel Aviv University asserts that these first nine chapters of 1 Chronicles serves as an introduction to the history of Israel. It tells the story by telling the reader who lived and who died and who sired whom. He finds that place names are also significant in that they tell us where we should be able to find archeological records of those who are mentioned in the pages of Chronicles. Reading the first sections of 1 Chronicles in light of the work we did in reading Samuel/Kings should give us the background we need to see the Chronicles genealogies as the history of Israel.
- In chapter 1, which names stand out as being very important in the story of Israel?
- In ancient literature, Nimrod is often the personification of evil in the world – much like the way many see Satan. In what ways do you see evil at work in the world?
- Richard Friedman calls Keturah “the most ignored significant person from the Hebrew Bible.” Who is the most important person from the history of our church that we no longer talk about?
- From chapter 1, we realize that many of the people who are conquered by the Israelites (like the Midianites) are related by ancestry. Do you ever feel like we are unnecessarily harsh with other denominations?
- With Jacob, in chapter 2, we find ourselves in a part of the story that we remember and understand. His twelve sons become the twelve tribes of Israel. Do we know more about some of his sons (and their tribes) than others? Why might that be?
- There is an obvious bias in Chronicles toward two of these sons: Judah and Levi. In what ways do Christians favor some people in the Bible over others?
- It’s important to the author that David comes from Judah. Is it important for you that your theology (preaching, books, etc.) come from the same tradition that you come from?
- Chapter 3, by talking about Solomon more than his brothers, shows us that first-born children are not as important in Hebrew society as we might have once thought. Which child are you (first, second, third, middle, baby, etc.)? Did it matter to your parents?
- We hear about Judah’s descendants several different ways and in several different chapters, including chapter 4. Does that tell you anything about what the author of Chronicles thinks about him? Is there a story that you can’t help but tell over and over again?
- How does Chronicles tell the story of Israel differently from Samuel and Kings?