Why The Genealogy of Jesus Matters – Matt 1:1-25

My first daily reading in the One Year Bible New Testament is  Matt 1:1-25

This is a record of the ancestors of Jesus the Messiah, a descendant of David and of Abraham.  Matthew 1:1 

The start of the New Testament starts as it should, WITH JESUS as the Messiah or “anointed one” who was promised in the Old Testament.

3 Reasons This Genealogy is Important

Most people breeze over the genealogy in Matt 1:2-17, but I think it is important for 3 reasons.

1. It puts Jesus in the context of history.

Instead of saying “Once upon a time in a land far, far away” it names actual people from history that they knew about. Jesus is real!

2. It shows that Jesus is a descendant of David just as the prophecies about the Messiah indicated.

As Jeremiah prophesied, “I will raise up a righteous descendant from King David’s line.” Jeremiah 23:5 

3. It shows that God uses messed up and flawed people. 

Abraham and Isaac both lied about their wives out of fear. Jacob was a trickster. Judah and his brothers betrayed Joseph. Tamar slept with her father-in-law. David committed adultery and murdered to cover it up. Solomon had 1,000 wives and worshiped false Gods. And every single person on that list sinned. As they say in the south, “God makes straight licks with crooked sticks.” No one on this list deserves to be there based on their own merit. Out of imperfection came perfection.

Jesus Saves

The other thing that stood out to me in my reading today was the angel’s description of Jesus in the Christmas story.

The angel comes to Jospeh in a dream and says this, “And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.”  Matthew 1:21  Jesus means the LORD SAVES! Warren Wiersbe said, “The name Jesus means “Saviour” and comes from the Hebrew name, Joshua (“Jehovah is salvation”).

Jesus is the most powerful name in human history.  At his name every knew will bow, and in his name people are saved, lives are changed, prayers are answered, and the world will be renewed.

Jesus is “God With Us”

The angel points out what Jesus came to do: Save his people from their sins. And oh how grateful I am for that. Then the angel quotes from Isaiah 7:14 and says,

“Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God is with us.’ ”  Matthew 1:23 

Jesus is God with us.  Jesus came to earth to save us from our sins. He did that so that he can live with us in our hearts.  The greatest privilege of the Christian life is living in the presence of God. I pray this new year that you make it about knowing Jesus, our savior, our messiah and the God who is with us!