Matthew 1:1-17

God Is Faithful

The Bible is one story contained in a one-volume library. The story is organized into two major sections that are called the old testament and the new testament. The story is the same, but the arrival of Jesus separates the two parts. Jesus' arrival was not an accident or the product of chance; it was the plan of God from eternity past. Matthew begins with the genesis or genealogy of Jesus Christ and joins the testaments by connecting Jesus to Abraham, the patriarch of the Jewish people. Jesus must be understood in light of the Old Testament, just as the Old Testament is to be interpreted in light of Jesus. The history of redemption anticipates the coming of Jesus Christ. Jesus came from an actual family, and that family line demonstrates the faithfulness of God. Jesus is God, but he is also a man, and this genealogy legitimizes Jesus' identity as King and an heir to David's crown. 

Grace Through The Ages

This ancestor list also reveals God's grace, purpose, and redemption. The names on this list include liars, deceivers, betrayers, prostitutes, and Gentiles. These were not pristine saints that were morally superior to everyone else; these were broken people showing that salvation belongs to the Lord. The women on the list are quite interesting. Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, and Bathsheba were all Gentile women with suspicious sexual relationships. Jesus' own mother experienced the stigma of pregnancy out of wedlock. The list includes kings and indicates that God was preserving David's line in spite of spiritual degeneration. The kings listed show the succession found in the southern kingdom demonstrating God's power in keeping his promises. The exile to Jesus emphasizes God's saving work in the world. God did not abandon his people, and he worked in spite of their disobedience and faithlessness. God was moving to the apex of his revelation and the completion of his redemptive work through Jesus. 

Things To Consider:

  • Why is it necessary for Matthew to connect Jesus to Abraham?
  • Why is it important to connect Jesus with David?
  • What can we learn from the list?
  • Who in this list encourages you? Why?
  • What do you think of when the list includes the deportation to Babylon?
  • Why is Jesus called the Christ?
  • How does this help you follow God's story?