Jan 10, 2012

The Generations of Shem

I decided to read through the Bible this year and had a neat “ah ha” moment when reading in Chapter 11 on the generations of Shem. Shem lived 502 years after the flood. Previously, the significance of this had not occurred to me. But this time, that stuck in my mind and I decided to do the math. Dating everything from the flood (i.e., year zero, where A.F. = year after the flood), I put together the following timeline regarding the generations of Shem:

0 Flood
2 A.F. Arpachsad born to Shem (who is 100 yrs old)
37 A.F. Shelah born to Arpachsad
67 A.F. Eber born to Shelah
101 A.F. Peleg born to Shelah
131 A.F. Reu born to Peleg
163 A.F. Serug born to Reu
193 A.F. Nahor born to Serug
222 A.F. Terah born to Nahor
292 A.F. Abram (Abraham) born to Terah
340 A.F. Peleg died
341 A.F. Nahor died
350 A.F. Noah died
370 A.F. Reu died
392 A.F. Isaac born
393 A.F. Serug died
440 A.F. Arpachsad died
452 A.F. Jacob and Esau born
467 A.F. Abraham died
470 A.F. Shelah died
502 A.F. Shem died
531 A.F. Eber died

How awesome that God allowed Noah and Shem to live so long. Noah’s life gave him the ability to be a witness to nine generations of Shem of the flood and God’s grace. Shem’s long life gave him the ability to be a witness to at least eleven generations of his family, including the Patriarchs, Abram, Isaac and Jacob! How great is our God. This just blows my mind! God preserved the truth of His dealings with man even from the earliest times. Shem might have taken his great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great grandson, Abram, up to Mt. Ararat to see the ark. How cool is that!