A twin in the Lord’s genealogy

Genesis Bible Background

01.16.2017 – Old Testament: Gen 38.27–30

To read the Bible in a year, read Genesis 38–40 on January 16, In the year of our Lord 2017

By Don Ruhl

Judah had twins by means of his daughter-in-law. One of them was in the line that gave the world the Christ. Notice something unusual about the birth of this twin,

Now it came to pass, at the time for giving birth, that behold, twins were in her womb. And so it was, when she was giving birth, that the one put out his hand; and the midwife took a scarlet thread and bound it on his hand, saying, “This one came out first.” Then it happened, as he drew back his hand, that his brother came out unexpectedly; and she said, “How did you break through? This breach be upon you!” Therefore his name was called Perez. Afterward his brother came out who had the scarlet thread on his hand. And his name was called Zerah (Genesis 38.27–30). 

Often the Lord uses the most unlikely people to fulfill His purposes, such as Tamar marrying Judah’s oldest son, who then died. Then she married the second son and he died. She should been married to the third son, but Judah prevented it.

She disguised herself as a harlot and Judah went in to her. She conceived and bore twins. One of them, Perez became part of the lineage that would lead to the bringing in of the Messiah into the world!


  • Have you seen unlikely people do wonderful things?
  • How has the Lord used you?

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