Actions of our Ancestors

It is not to say that we can’t take control of our lives and make decisions for ourselves, but the actions of our ancestors do have an impact upon us in some way.

Genesis 36:1-43

Reference:  v.14  The sons of Esau’s wife Oholibamah, daughter of Anah and granddaughter of Zibeon, who she bore to Esau:
Jeush, Jalam and Korah. (NIV Bible)

Explore:  If you are committed to reading through the Bible you will notice many passages like chapter 36, a whole list of names where you struggle to pick up anything of interest.  I agree, and to be honest I do tend to skim over some of the names, particularly the ones I struggle to pronounce.  However, as I read through the start of this chapter I was struck by the connectedness of all the people mentioned.  No one was separate; everyone was somehow connected to someone else.  I thought that verse 14 illustrated this perfectly – and besides I just loved the name Oholibamah (in my head I pronounce it “O-holy-bama”).  Oholibamah is the daughter of Anah and granddaughter of Zibeon, she is the wife of Esau and she had three sons: Jeush, Jalam and Korah.  There’s a fairly decent family tree already set out in one verse.  And in that way she is totally surrounded by family.

Application:  For me living in Australia today, family is very important but certainly not as interconnected as for Oholibamah.  On this website I have not listed for you who my grandparents are and you are probably not in the least bit interested who my parents are and what they do.  And yet, because of who they are and what they have done in the past, I am the person I am today.  If my grandparents had not migrated to Australia my life would be very different.  If my parents had not prioritized education, my life would be very different.  The actions of our ancestors do have an impact on our lives.  That is not to say that we can’t take control of our lives and make decisions for ourselves, but their actions have impacted upon us in some way.  We must not see ourselves as isolated beings, but a part of a greater web of connections that our family creates.

Prayer:  Lord, sometimes we feel alone and isolated but with our faith in You we have been brought into a greater heavenly family.  May the communities that we are a part of bring us support and encouragement for the journey.  Amen.

What impact have your ancestors had on your life?

This article was written by Linda Bailey

Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.

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