Advent: Preparing for Jesus – The Lineage (Part 1)
December 14, 2019
This is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah the son of David, the son of Abraham: Abraham was the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers, Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar, Perez the father of Hezron, Hezron the father of Ram, Ram the father of Amminadab, Amminadab the father of Nahshon, Nahshon the father of Salmon, Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab, Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth, Obed the father of Jesse, and Jesse the father of King David.
There is no need for Ancestry.com when it comes to tracing the lineage of Jesus. Both Matthew and Luke provide a detailed genealogy. You may not have spent much devotional time in this portion of Scripture, but the inspired list of names contains important truth. Today we will make several observations about this list (Matthew 1:1-17). Tomorrow we will consider a few of the people mentioned in Jesus’ lineage.
Matthew’s Genealogy: General Observations
- Matthew gave Jesus’ lineage from His legal father, Joseph, through King David all the way back to Abraham, the father of the Jewish people.
- God made two great covenants with His people Israel: The Abrahamic Covenant (Genesis 12 and15) and the Davidic Covenant (2 Samuel 7). Matthew included this genealogy to show that Jesus had the lineage to fulfill these covenants.
- Five women are included in this list, unusual additions for genealogies in Jesus’ time. We will consider Tamar, Rahab, Bathsheba, and Ruth tomorrow. Each has an interesting story.
- When the fifth woman, Mary, is mentioned, an important change occurred. The genealogy repeated “the father of,” but when Matthew came to Mary, he said, “of whom was born Jesus.” “Of whom” is a feminine pronoun indicating that Jesus was the physical child of Mary but Joseph was not His physical father.
- Matthew did not list every individual in the genealogy but rather chose to list fourteen generations in three important historical periods: Abraham to David, David to the Babylonian Exile, the Babylonian exile to Jesus.
Matthew’s genealogy answered the important question that a Jew would ask of the person who claimed to be the Messiah. Jesus is a royal descendant from King David and has the rightful lineage of the Eternal King.
Father, this list reminds us that You are mindful of people, not just as a group but as individuals. Thank You for the truth contained in this genealogy. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
For parents: Genealogies can be used to show God’s sovereign plan and grace in history. With the genealogy above, you can show your children how God uses people in His sovereign plan for our lives. Share your insights with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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