The Cream of the Crop
Ken D. Trivette
I Chronicles 4:9-10
1. I agree with Clarence Macartney who said, "Tables of genealogy make dull reading." i Most of the time, if we are honest, when we come to the genealogies of the Bible we skip over them. That is especially true when we come to first nine chapters of I Chronicles.
2. These chapters read like a Hebrew Telephone directory. There are more than 500 names given to us. Reading through all these names, many that you have no ideal how to pronounce, I confess can make for dull reading.
3. I also agree with Macartney when he wrote: "Yet they have their place in the inspired Scriptures, and it is worth while to read through these dreary catalogues of names, for here and there, just as one finds a flower growing amid the ruins of Ephesus or Antioch, you come upon the record of some noble and useful life." ii
4. In the scripture we read Jabez is one such flower blooming among the many names that are listed. In fact, we read in verse 9 that of all the names listed "Jabez was more honourable than his brethren."
5. There are no doubt many great men listed among all these men. No doubt some were greater men than others. But Jabez was the greatest of them all. Some were no doubt better than the others, but Jabez was the best. He was the cream of the crop.
6. Many cities have what is sometimes called a "Blue Book" wherein are inscribed the names of certain important and influential people. Jabez had his name in Heaven's Blue Book. He was more honorable than his brethren.
7. Jabez stirs us to want to give our best, do our best, and be our best for God. He discourages mediocrity and encourages achievement. He teaches us to despise the ordinary and seek the extraordinary.
8. Someone has said that in each of you there are 3 persons:
* There is the person you are right now,
* The person you could be for evil if you allowed Satan to run your life.
* The person you could be for God if you allowed God to ...
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