Genesis Chapter 38

The time frame of this chapter is not easily ascertained. Many commentators say this is an interlude between the selling of Joseph to Potiphar to the time of his rise in power. If that were the case, then all the events in this chapter had to occur within about 23 years, which is difficult, but not impossible. There had to be time for Judah to marry, have three sons, one somewhat younger than the other two, and for them all to be of the age of marriage themselves. It is also possible that this chapter parallels some of the events in the preceding and proceeding chapters. The time of this chapter could start at the time of Jacob arriving in Shechem in chapter 33. The focus of this chapter is on Judah, his sons, and his daughter-in-law.

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