What does it say?
Chapters 7 through 9 are the end of the genealogy that connects the returning Jewish exiles with their ancestors. Take heart! Everything said thus far about genealogies applies here. Be alert for the tidbits of commentary as you run your eyes over these lists that otherwise will probably not have much significance to you at this time.
Chapter 10 is a summation of the war with the Philistines that ultimately resulted in the deaths of Saul and Jonathan. The final two verses clearly establish the reason for Saul’s death.
What does it mean?
We’ve already learned that Chronicles has the purpose of providing a proper historical perspective for the Jews returning to the land following the years of captivity in Babylonia. It is important for them to learn about all twelve tribes, but special emphasis is given to Judah and Benjamin, as most of those returning would be from those southern tribes. Additionally, David is from Judah and Saul from Benjamin, so the genealogies of those two tribes also contain the royal lines as well.
Before the foundation for David’s kingdom is established, the reason for Saul’s demise is clearly communicated so that this new generation will not be tempted to think of the contrast between Saul’s kingdom and David’s as mere political infighting or personal differences. Saul was placed on the throne in response to Israel’s desire to be just like the surrounding nations. Saul was God’s concession to Israel’s selfish desires. God warned them that his kingdom would not end well, and it did not. David was the man that God had in heart all along to be king and the ancestor of the coming Christ.
How will I respond?
Are there things in my life that I am trying to make happen in my own power and strategy rather than simply trusting God and following his lead? I am seeing that the Bible is one story and one mission. Rather than trying to tell God what he should do, how must my life conform to his global plan? How should these thoughts affect my prayer life today?