1 Chronicles : Christian Community Bible
Introduction to 1 Chronicles
The book of Chronicles, now divided into two parts, was most probably written together with those of Ezra and Nehemiah in the fourth century before Christ, after the Jews came back from Exile: compare the last verses of Chronicles and the firsts of Ezra.
It was like a second attempt of telling the Sacred History from the beginning to the times of Judaism. The first attempt, much broader, had been carried out during the time of the Kings and Prophets and we find it in the previous books, from Genesis to Kings. Now, in taking again past events and memories, the author of Chronicles wanted to show that the future of the Jewish people depended on their faithfulness to the Law of Moses and to the prescriptions for worship.
The author is almost exclusively interested in the history of the kings of Judah, David’s descendants. While the author gives us a list of David’s ancestors all the way back to Adam, he does not say a word about the kingdom of Israel where most of the chosen people lived, because Israel had separated from the kingdom of David.
The author addresses Jewish people and strives to convince them that there is no blessing or future for them unless they remain strongly united around their faith, rooted in their land, obeying the Law and the priests and putting above all concerns the true worshipping in the temple of Jerusalem. The people of God must remain one and with a visible hierarchy.
How can we benefit from reading this book? On each page we will find the conviction that the believing people must have no other ambition but to fulfill the will of God; other victories will come as a gift. Moreover, it is a reminder that Christ’s people, even though they do not have visible borders now and do not live in isolation among other people, must not lose their uniqueness in an attempt to blend with the masses. Believers will never totally resemble those who do not believe, nor will they think in exactly the same way. They have their own mission and are concerned about the visible unity of the church, around those whom God placed among them as his representatives.
NOTE: excerpted from the introductory material for this book.