their generations

1 Chronicles 1:29

1:29 their generations. Ishmael was a son of Abraham, as Esau (I Chronicles 1:35) was a son of Isaac, yet neither was in the line of the chosen people Israel. The same is true of the sons of Keturah, Abraham’s wife in his later years. Yet their descendants are included here along with those of Jacob, essentially copied from the same tabulations in Genesis. In accord with the principle of verbal inspiration, there must be a reason why the writer of I Chronicles was led to repeat these records. All of these others are descendants of Abraham, and for later generations of both Jews and Gentiles, repetition emphasizes again the fact that God has abundantly fulfilled His original prophetic promise to make Abraham “a father of many nations” (Genesis 17:5). These offspring—from Ishmael, Keturah and Esau—have their modern descendants in the various Arab peoples and states. It is also noteworthy that, despite the long enmity of Arabs and Israelis toward each other, and the enmity of both toward Christians, the Arabs alone among non-Christian peoples continue to believe in the book of Genesis, in a primeval special creation of the entire universe, and in a personal transcendent Creator God. All other nations since the dispersion at Babel, have followed some form of evolutionary humanistic pantheism as their religion, although some—especially among the animists—do maintain also the tradition of a far-off “unknown God” (Acts 17:23), who was greater than the other gods.

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