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Primogeniture and the inheritance of the covenant


We begin with the restatement of the Law of Mosheh found in the book called Devariym in the Ivriyt, but Deuteronomy in the Greek:

Devariym (Deuteronomy) 21:16-17
Then it shall be, when he makes את eth-his sons את eth to inherit that which he has, that he may not make את eth-the son of the beloved firstborn before the son of the hated, which is indeed the firstborn: 17 But he את eth-shall acknowledge the son of the hated for the firstborn, by giving him a double portion of all that he has: for he is the beginning of his strength; the right of the firstborn is his.

This presents now an interesting issue as we discuss the birth of the twins to Tamar, the illicit concubine of Yahudah, the fourth son of Ya`aqov. Let’s pick up the story:

Bere’shiyth (Genesis) 38:6-11
And Yahudah took a woman for Er his firstborn, whose name was Tamar. 7 And Er, Yahudah’s firstborn, was wicked in the sight of Yahuah; and Yahuah slew him. 8 And Yahudah said unto Onan, Go in unto your brother's woman, and marry her, and raise up seed to your brother. 9 And Onan knew that the seed should not be his; and it came to pass, when he went in unto his brother's woman, that he spilled it on the ground, lest that he should give seed to his brother. 10 And the thing which he did displeased Yahuah: wherefore he slew him also. 11 Then said Yahudah to Tamar his daughter in law, Remain a widow at your father's house, till Shelach my son be grown: for he said, Lest perchance he die also, as his brethren did. And Tamar went and dwelt in her father's house.

So here we see Yahudah’s Kena`aniy (Canaanite) children being denied parentage with Tamar (by their own choice, to be sure). And how much older was Tamar than Yahudah’s third son? We don’t know, but we do know she had to wait.

The story continues:

Bere’shiyth (Genesis) 38:12-14
And in process of time the daughter of Shuach Yahudah’s woman died; and Yahudah was comforted, and went up unto his sheepshearers to Timnathah, he and his friend Chiyrah the Adullamiy. 13 And it was told Tamar, saying, Behold your father in law goes up to Timna to shear his sheep. 14 And she put her widow's garments off from her, and covered her with a veil, and wrapped herself, and sat in an open place, which is by the way to Timna; for she saw that Shelach was grown, and she was not given unto him to be his woman.

We see that Yahudah breaks his promise (and the mitsvah) and does not give Tamar to his son Shelach although he was grown, and so the promise of marriage to Tamar was now to be permanently broken. So she disguises herself and sits “in an open place”.

Bere’shiyth (Genesis) 38:15-18
When Yahudah saw her, he thought her to be a harlot; because she had covered her face. 16 And he turned unto her by the way, and said, Go to, I pray you, let me come in unto you; (for he knew not that she was his daughter in law.) And she said, What will you give me, that you may come in unto me? 17 And he said, I will send you a kid from the flock. And she said, Will you give me a pledge, till you send it? 18 And he said, What pledge shall I give you? And she said, Your signet, and your bracelets, and your staff that is in your hand. And he gave it her, and came in unto her, and she conceived by him.

Shemoth (Exodus) 22:16
And if a man entice a maid that is not betrothed, and lie with her, he shall surely endow her to be his woman.

Of course, this mitsvah was given much later in time, but nonetheless we see a Torah obligation imposing itself on Yahudah.  Let’s see what he does:

Bere’shiyth (Genesis) 38:24-26 
And it came to pass about three months after, that it was told Yahudah, saying, Tamar your daughter in law has played the harlot; and also, behold, she is with child by whoredom. And Yahudah said, Bring her forth, and let her be burnt. 25 When she was brought forth, she sent to her father in law, saying, By the man, whose these are, am I with child: and she said, Discern, I pray you, whose are these, the signet, and bracelets, and staff. 26 And Yahudah acknowledged them, and said, She has been more righteous than I; because that I gave her not to Shelach my son. And he knew her again no more. 

However, from this union comes one of the most interesting stories in scripture: the birth of the twins.

Bere’shiyth (Genesis) 38:27-30 
And it came to pass in the time of her travail, that, behold, twins were in her womb. 28 And it came to pass, when she travailed, that the one put out his hand: and the midwife took and bound upon his hand a scarlet thread, saying, This came out first. 29 And it came to pass, as he drew back his hand, that, behold, his brother came out: and she said, How have you broken forth? this breach be upon you: therefore his name was called Perets. 30 And afterward came out his brother, that had the scarlet thread upon his hand: and his name was called Zerach.

We have two things here: first, the breach of the child to emerge first, and the second, is that the firstborn – the primogenitor – is Zerach, and the rightful inheritance of Yahudah belongs to Zerach. What would that inheritance be?

Bere’shiyth (Genesis) 49:8-12 
Yahudah, you are he whom your brethren shall praise: your hand shall be in the neck of your enemies;* your father's children shall bow down before you. 9 Yahudah is a lion's whelp: from the prey, my son, you are gone up: he stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion; who shall rouse him up? 10 The sceptre shall not depart from Yahudah, nor a Torah giver from between his feet, until Shiyloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be. 11 Binding his foal unto the vine, and his ass's colt unto the choice vine; he washed his garments in wine, and his clothes in the blood of grapes: 12 His eyes shall be red with wine, and his teeth white with milk.

* your hand shall be on your own neck (implying the teaching of the use of the bow).

The Rampant Lions of Yahudah:

                     The Red Lion (Zerach)                                                  The Golden Lion (Perets)

Can we determine that the child of the inheritance was not in fact Perets, but rather Zerach?   Consider the Cepher Yashar (Book of Jasher):

Yashar (Jasher) 45:29-32 
And at the revolution of the year, Aliyath the woman of Yahudah died; and Yahudah was comforted for his woman, and after the death of Aliyath, Yahudah went up with his friend Chiyrah to Timna to shear their sheep. 30 And Tamar heard that Yahudah had gone up to Timna to shear the sheep, and that Shiyloh was grown up, and Yahudah did not delight in her. 31 And Tamar rose up and put off the garments of her widowhood, and she put a veil upon her, and she entirely covered herself, and she went and sat in the public thoroughfare, which is upon the road to Timna. 32 And Yahudah passed and saw her and took her and he came to her, and she conceived by him, and at the time of being delivered, behold, there were twins in her womb, and he called the name of the first Perets, and the name of the second Zerach.

If you are the first born, are there any means by which you can lose your right of primogeniture (inheritance of the first born)?

The answer is: Yes!

First, we have the issue of Esau. Several things affected his right to inherit as the first born.

Bere’shiyth (Genesis) 26:34-35 
And Esau was forty years old when he took to be his woman את eth-Yahudith the daughter of Be’eriy the Chittiy, and את eth-Basmath the daughter of Eylon the Chittiy: 35 Which were a grief of mind unto Yitschaq and to Rivqah.

Bere’shiyth (Genesis) 25:29-33 
And Ya`aqov sod pottage: and Esau came from the field, and he was faint: 30 And Esau said to El-Ya`aqov, Feed me, I pray you, with that same red pottage; for I am faint: therefore was his name called Edom. 31 And Ya`aqov said, Sell me this day your את eth-birthright. 32 And Esau said, Behold, I am at the point to die: and what profit shall this birthright do to me? 33 And Ya`aqov said, Swear to me this day; and he swore unto him: and he sold his את eth-birthright unto Ya`aqov.

Bere’shiyth (Genesis) 27:34-36 
And when Esau heard את eth-the words of his father, he cried with a great and exceeding bitter cry, and said unto his father, Bless me, even me also, O my father. 35 And he said, Your brother came with subtilty, and has taken away your blessing. 36 And he said, Is not he rightly named Ya`aqov? for he has supplanted me these two times: he took away את eth-my birthright; and, behold, now he has taken away my blessing. And he said, Have you not reserved a blessing for me?

So we see here that Esau lost all rights as the first born, losing both the birthright and the blessing. Let’s see how primogeniture was affected among the sons of Ya`aqov:

Bere’shiyth (Genesis) 35:22-26
Now the sons of Ya`aqov were twelve: 23 The sons of Le’ah; Re’uven, Ya`aqov's firstborn, and Shim`on, and Leviy, and Yahudah, and Yisshakar, and Zevulun: 24 The sons of Rachel; Yoceph, and Binyamiyn: 25 And the sons of Bilhah, Rachel's hand-maid; Dan, and Naphtaliy: 26 And the sons of Zilpah, Le’ah's handmaid; Gad, and Asher: these are the sons of Ya`aqov, which were born to him in Paddan Aram.

Bere’shiyth (Genesis) 49:3
Re’uven, you are my firstborn, my might, and the beginning of my strength, the excellency of dignity, and the excellency of power:

However, a problem would emerge which would cost him his birthright:

Bere’shiyth (Genesis) 49:3 
Unstable as water, you shall not excel; because you went up to your father's bed; then defiled it: he went up to my couch. 

In case that is not clear enough, consider the following:

Divrei Hayamiym Ri’shon (1Chronicles) 5:1-2 
NOW the sons of Re’uven the firstborn of Yashar’el, (for he was the firstborn; but, forasmuch as he defiled his father's bed, his birthright was given unto the sons of Yoceph the son of Yashar’el: and the genealogy is not to be reckoned after the birthright. 2 For Yahudah prevailed above his brethren, and of him came the chief ruler; but the birthright was Yoceph’s:)

Let us see if a similar disposition would occur with Zerach, the firstborn son of Yahudah and Tamar:

Bere’shiyth (Genesis) 46:12 
And the sons of Yahudah; Er, and Onan, and Shelach, and Perets, and Zerach: but Er and Onan died in the land of Kena`an. And the sons of Perets were Chetsron and Chamul.

Divrei Hayamiym Ri’shon (1 Chronicles) 2:6-8
And the sons of Zerach; Zimriy, and Eythan, and Heyman, and Kalkol, and Darda: five of them in all. 7 And the sons of Karmiy; Akar, the troubler of Yashar’el, who transgressed in the thing accursed. 8 And the sons of Eythan; Azaryahu.

Although the sons of Karmiy would do the thing accursed when the one son who traveled with Yahusha and the house of Yashar’el into the wilderness and breached the command, the other sons and their sons did not proceed with Mosheh into the Exodus:

Yahusha (Joshua) 7:16-18 
So Yahusha rose up early in the morning, and brought את eth-Yashar’el by their tribes; and the tribe of Yahudah was taken: 17 And he brought את eth-the family of Yahudah; and he took את eth-the family of the Zarchiym: and he brought את eth-the family of the Zarchiym man by man; and Zavdiy was taken: 18 And he brought את eth-his house-hold man by man; and Akan, the son of Karmiy, the son of Zavdiy, the son of Zerach, of the tribe of Yahudah, was taken.

So, we see that of the sons of Zerach, Zimry and his household would retain with Mosheh and the exodus into the wilderness. But we learn a bit of history when we study his other sons.

According to John D. Keyser, the migration out of Egypt led by Moses was not the only migration. Another important Grecian Colony was founded by Cecrops who became the first legendary King of Attica.  Cecrops was in fact of the house of Yashar’el.

Author E. Raymond Capt notes:

According to The Harmsworth Encyclopedia, Cecrops was actually Calcol (Kalkol), identified in Divrei Hayamiym Ri’shon (1 Chronicles) 2:26 and Melekiym Ri’shon (1 Kings) 5:11 (4:31 in most Bibles). Calcol, the brother of Darda, was the mythical founder of Athens (Attica) and its first king. Historically, he was thought to have been the leader of a band of Yashar`e’liym colonists from Mitsrayim (Egypt).  Missing Links Discovered in Assyrian Tablets, Artisan Sales, Thousand Oaks, CA. 1985, p. 65).

Kalkol, or Cecrops as the Greeks called him, left Egypt well before the exodus of the Bible. Herman L. Hoeh, author of the Compendium of World History, states that "Athenian history commences with the founding of the city by Cecrops in 1556 B.C." Herman L. Hoeh, Compendium of World History, Volume I, p. 390.

According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, Cecrops is known traditionally as the first king of Attica (Pausanias ix. 33). He was said to have divided the inhabitants into twelve communities; to have instituted the laws of marriage and property and introduced a new form of worship. The introduction of bloodless sacrifice, the burial of the dead, and the invention of writing were also attributed to him. Encyclopedia Britannica, 1943 edition. Vol. 5, p. 85.

Note: The teaching of writing at this time would corroborate the idea that the Greek Cyrillic alphabet was derived from the Paleo Ivriyt (and not the Chaldean Hebrew), and that the Paleo Ivriyt – both in reading and writing – was the language of the house of Yashar’el in Mitsrayim.

Yet another group who fled Egypt were a tribe under the leadership of Darda, the brother to Kalkol and son of Zerach.

  1. H. Bennett discusses this exodus as follows:

Let us now turn to that other part of Zerach’s descendants which fled out of Mitsrayim under the leadership of Darda. In the KJV Authorized Version of the Bible this name is spelled Dara (H1873), but in the margin the alternate spelling is Darda, and Strong’s tells us the Dara is a shortened abbreviation (i.e., a typo or shortened spelling) of the name Darda (H1862). The historian Yocephus (Flavius Josephus) refers to him as Dardanus. This is significant because the group he led went northward across the Mediterranean Sea to the north-west corner of what we now call Asia Minor (the Anatolian Peninsula). There, under the rule of Darda (Dardanus), they established a kingdom that would come to be called Troy; which sat on the southern shore of that narrow body of water which bears his name even to this day, namely, the Dardanelles. Symbols of Our Celto-Saxon Heritage, Canadian British Israel Assn., Windsor, Ontario. 1985, pp. 119-121.

It is possible to reckon the date of the founding of the Dardani in the area of Troy (now believed to be modern Hissarlik, Turkey) to the 15th Century BC. The Trojan War was waged against the city of Troy by the Achaeans (Greeks) after Paris of Troy took Helen from her husband Menelaus, king of Sparta. Historians usually date it to the 12th or 11th century BC, often preferring the dates given by Eratosthenes, 1194–1184 BC, which roughly corresponds with archaeological evidence of a catastrophic burning of Troy.

Following the destruction of Troy, the tribe of the Dardani migrated across the Dardanelles to occupy an area inland, where, by the 4th century BC, they would be recognized as the Dardani in an area that would eventually be called Dardania.

From this tribe would come Constantine – the one who would create Roman Christianity.

Before we exit this discussion, consider that the Scottish historians also credit the creation of kings in Ireland to Gathelus, the son of Kalkol, who had died in Greece in the year 1506 B.C.; after he directed his son and his wife Scota to plant the scepter of Judah (through Zerach (Zarah)) in distant lands to the west. Gathelus would establish his crown in Ulster, and the name of his clan as the Scots, and would eventually cross into Scotland to confront the Picts and to conquer their lands.

It is important to piece this record together correctly.  The Picts were Kasdiym – descendants of Avraham’s brother Nachor and are properly called the Celtic people.  The tribes living in Ireland at the time of the arrival of Gathelus were of the tribe of Dan; called the Tuatha de Danaan. The house of Zerach (the Zarchiym or Zarchiy) would establish the scepter of Judah in Northern Spain, Ireland, and Scotland, and the tribes themselves would come to occupy Wales, Ireland, the Isle of Man (the Manx), Scotland, and that area of England called Cornwall and Devonshire. The Welsh are known as Kumry, the Irish as Gaelic, those on the Isle of Man as Manx, and the Scots as Scots, but properly, they are all Zarchiy. (Bemidbar (Numbers) 26:13).

So this is the preliminary groundwork which we will use to later establish the throne of David. But let us return to our subject matter in respect of Primogenture:

Divrei Hayamiym Ri’shon (1 Chronicles) 16:15-19
Be ye mindful always of his covenant; the word which he commanded to a thousand generations; 16 Even of the covenant which he cut with את eth-Avraham, and of his oath unto Yitschaq; 17 And has confirmed the same to Ya`aqov for a law, and to Yashar’el for an everlasting covenant, 18 Saying, Unto you will I give the land of Kena`an, the lot of your inheritance; 19 When ye were but few, even a few, and strangers in it.

Divrei Hayamiym Sheniy (2 Chronicles) 7:18-20
Then will I stablish את eth the throne of your kingdom, according as I have covenanted with Daviyd your father, saying, There shall not fail you a man to be ruler in Yashar’el. 19 But if ye turn away, and forsake my statutes and my commandments, which I have set before you, and shall go and serve other elohiym, and worship them; 20 Then will I pluck them up by the roots out of my land which I have given them; and את eth-this house, which I have sanctified for my name, will I cast out of my sight, and will make it to be a proverb and a byword among all nations.

In closing, we note that this final prophecy does not terminate the throne of David; rather it casts a different judgment: expulsion from the promised land. The throne of David would come to be occupied by a true descendant, a true heir:

Yesha’yahu (Isaiah) 11:1-5
AND there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Yishai, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots: 2 And the Ruach Yahuah shall rest upon him, the Ruach Chokmah and Biynah, the Ruach Etsah and Gevurah, the Ruach Da’ath and of the Yir’ah of Yahuah; 3 And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of Yahuah: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears: 4 But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked. 5 And righteousness shall be the belt of his loins, and faithfulness the belt of his reins.

And why would the question of the firstborn matter?

Mattithyahu (Matthew) 1:1-16 
THE cepher of the generation of Yahusha Ha’Mashiach, the son of David, the son of Avraham. 2 Avraham begat את eth-Yitschaq; and Yitschaq begat את eth-Ya`aqov; and Ya`aqov begat את eth-Yahudah and את eth-his brethren; 3 And Yahudah begat את eth-Perets and את eth-Zerach of Tamar; and Perets begat את eth-Chetsron; and Chetsron begat את eth-Aram; 4 And Aram begat את eth-Ammiynadav; and Ammiynadav begat את eth-Nachshon; and Nachshon begat את eth-Salmah; 5 And Salmah begat את eth-Bo`az of Rachav; and Bo`az begat את eth-Oved of R’oth; and Oved begat את eth-Yishai; 6 And Yishai begat את eth-David the king; and David the king begat את eth-Shalomah (king) of her that had been the woman of Uriyahu; 7 And Shalomah begat את eth-Rechav`am (king); and Rechav`am begat את eth-Aviyahu (king); and Aviyahu begat את eth-Aca (king); 8 And Aca begat את eth-Yahushaphat (king); and Yahushaphat begat את eth-Yoram (king); and Yoram begat את eth Uzziyahu (king); 9 And Uzziyahu begat את eth-Yotham (king); and Yotham begat את eth-Achaz (king); and Achaz begat את eth-Yechizqiyahu (king); 10 And Yechizqiyahu begat את eth-Menashsheh (king); and Menashsheh begat את eth-Amon (king); and Amon begat את eth-Yo’shiyahu (king); 11 And Yo’shiyahu begat אתeth-Yekonyahu (king)  and את eth-his brethren, about the time they were carried away to Babel: 12 And after they were brought to Babel, Yekonyahu את eth begat She’altiy’el (king in exile); and She’altiy’el begat את eth-Zerubbavel (king in exile); 13 And Zerubbavel begat את eth-Aviyhud (king in exile);  and Aviyhud begat את eth-Elyaqiym (king in exile);  and Elyaqiym begat את eth Azzur (king in exile); 14 And Azzur begat את eth-Tsadoq (king in exile); and Tsadoq begat את eth-Yoqiym (king in exile); and Yoqiym begat את eth-El’ayil (king in exile); 15 And El’ayil begat את eth-El`azar (king in exile); and El`azar begat את eth-Matthan (king in exile); and Matthan begat את eth Ya`aqov (king in exile); 16 And Ya`aqov begat את eth-Yoceph  (king in exile) the father of Miryam, of whom was born Yahusha, who is called Mashiach.

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Yo'el (Joel) 2:28

And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my Ruach upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions.

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