In the Old Testament, the fourth son of Jacob and Leah (Gen. 29:35; 37:26–27; 43:3, 8; 44:16; 49:8). Jacob blessed Judah that he would be a natural leader among the sons of Jacob and that Shiloh (Jesus Christ) would be his descendant (Gen. 49:10).
The tribe of Judah took the lead after the settlement in Canaan. Its chief rival was the tribe of Ephraim. Moses blessed the tribe of Judah (Deut. 33:7). After the reign of Solomon, the tribe of Judah became the kingdom of Judah.
In the reign of Rehoboam the dominions of Solomon were broken up into two separate kingdoms, mainly because of the jealousy between the tribes of Ephraim and Judah. The southern kingdom, or kingdom of Judah, included the tribe of Judah and the greater part of Benjamin. Jerusalem was its capital. On the whole it remained more faithful to the worship of Jehovah than did the northern kingdom. Judah was less exposed to attack from the north and east, and the supreme power remained in the hands of the family of David until the Babylonian captivity. The kingdom of Judah managed to exist for 135 years after the downfall of the more populous and more powerful kingdom of Israel.
This refers to the Bible as a record of the house of Judah (Ezek. 37:15–19). In the last days, when the various branches of the house of Israel are gathered, their sacred records will also be gathered together. These scriptural records complement one another and form a unified testimony that Jesus is the Christ, the God of Israel and the God of the whole earth (JST, Gen. 50:24–36 [Appendix]; 2 Ne. 3; 29).