Tamar : A Courageous Woman

The bible is full of stories of ordinary woman doing extra ordinary things. Many of them lived in times when the law and leaders of the land were very harsh and ruthless. Despite the challenges faced, each of the women in this prevailed with the help and grace of God.

Tamar : The Canaanite woman who inherited a Hebrew promise of a living God

As Judah and Zimran concluded their bride price negotiations Tamar knew her fate as a 14yr old bride and child bearer had been set by her father. By day break the next day Judah her new father in law, Acash her maid servant and Tamar set off to Judah’s house were Tamar was to become wife to Er, Judah’s first and most cruel son.

Upon arrival at her new home, the young bride was mocked by a cruel and vain mother in-law Bathshua, ridiculed by Onan her brother in law and despised by Er the man she would call husband for as long as he lived. This “welcome attitude” set the tone for relationships she was to have with her in-laws. Years of bettering and abuse from Er marked Tamar’s days as she watched with pain the discord in Judah’s household. Unable to do anything, she soldiered on and remained faithful. Until one day Judah summed up the courage to confront his house but Er rebelled against him and suffered the wrath of ‘the God of Judah”

Left childless and widowed, Onan became Tamar’s second husband but the wickedness of his heart sent him to the grave.  With two husbands dead, a mother in law convinced she had bewitched them, there was no way Judah would give her his last son as husband to Tamar. He sent her packing to her father’s house with the promise that he would call for her when his son was old enough. Zimran took offence and demoted Tamar to the servant’s package as she waited in vain for hope of returning to Judah’s household to bear children for his tribe.

After years of waiting in anguish and shame for a promise that was clearly not coming to pass Tamar, claimed her childbearing right from the house of Judah in an act only a courageous and brave woman could do and she later became the mother of Perez and Zerah ancestors of Jusus Christ.

 

The End

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