The text for this sermon comes from Matthew 1.
Jews kept extensive genealogies to establish a person’s heritage, inheritance, legitimacy, and rights (cf. Josephus,Life of Josephus 1–6). Matthew likely draws on the genealogies of the OT, with some omissions (see note onMatt. 1:17). He demonstrates Jesus’ legal claim to the throne of David, emphasizing Jesus’ legal descent from David and Abraham, while Luke’s genealogical record (Luke 3:23–38) emphasizes Jesus’ biological descent from David and Adam.
vs 1 The Gospel’s opening words carried special significance for a Jewish audience, whose ancestry was inseparably intertwined with the covenants God made with Israel. Jesus (Gk.Iēsous) was the historical, everyday name, and isYeshua‘/Yehoshua‘ (Joshua) in Hebrew, meaning “Yahweh saves” (Neh. 7:7; cf. Matt. 1:21). Christ (Gk. Christos, from Hb. mashiakh, “anointed”) points back to David as the anointed king of Israel. The designation “Messiah” came to summarize several strands of OT expectation, especially the promise of an “anointed one” who would righteously rule God’s people (2 Sam. 7:11b–16). Son of David evoked images of a Messiah with a royal lineage who would reestablish the throne in Jerusalem and the kingdom of Israel. son of Abraham. God’s covenant with Abraham established Israel as a chosen people and also affirmed that the whole world would be blessed through his line (Gen. 12:1–3; 22:18).
vs 2 Abraham is mentioned by the author of Hebrews as being a man of faith. Abraham was told by God to go. Not knowing where, Abraham packed up and left and followed God.
Jacob, deceived both his brother and his father. He wasted much of his life. When Jacob went to live with his uncle, he was deceived by his uncle. Jacob worked 7 years to marry Rachael and ended up marrying her sister. Jacob’s uncle asked him to work another 7 years for Rachael and Jacob did. It was not until Jacob’s encounter with God that Jacob was changed and started to pursue God instead of himself.
vs 3 Judah was one of the brother’s of Joseph, who sold Joseph into slavery. Tamar had questionable character.
Between vs 3 and 4 is a period of 450 years.
vs 5 Rahab was a prostitute. She was a Gentile. Boaz is the kinsman redeemer in Ruth’s story which points us to Jesus as being our redeemer. Ruth is a Gentile.
vs 6 Jesse did not even present his son David when Samuel came to his house to anoint the next King that God chose to be king.
Matthew does not shy away from David’s story. In case you were too quick to forget David is the father of Solomon by the wife of Uriah. Matthew shows us that David is an adulterer and a murderer. However, David fell on his face before God and cried out in repentance and was forgiven.
From vs 4 – vs 6 is 400 years.
vs 7 Solomon is both the wisest man and richest man that ever lived. Solomon wrote three books in the Bible, one being Proverbs which was written to his son Rehoboam.
Rehoboam was king but when given wise counsel, he ignored it. He was a hard and harsh king.
vs 8 Jehoshaphat was a king known to seek God in his dealings and he is recorded as being able to bring peace beteen Judah and Israel.
vs 9 The mention of Uzziah puts us in Isaiah’s place in history.
Ahaz did not seek God. He was foolish.
This is how Manasseh is remembered: But they did not listen, and Manasseh led them astray to do more evil than the nations had done whom the LORD destroyed before the people of Israel.
(2 Kings 21:9 ESV)
vs 10 Amos is the prophet that we read about in the Book of Amos.
vs 11 Matthew may have drawn from 1 Chron. 3:10–14, since both genealogies omit several kings found in the narrative of Kings and Chronicles. Omitting names in a genealogy was common to make for ease of memorization. One is struck in this section by the alternately godly and wicked kings who ruled Israel.
vs 12-17 Zerubbabel led the first group given permission to return to Israel from the exile.
The total period of time between Abraham and Jesus is 2000 years.
Jesus is the rightful legal heir to the covenant promises associated with the Davidic throne (v. 6) as well as the rightful legal heir to the covenant promises related to the Abrahamic seed and land (vv. 1–2).
What is of great value that we can pull out of this text and apply it to our lives right now in our context?
A few things….
- You are not responsible for your family’s past mistakes. You are not responsible for their poor decisions, their behavior, their adultery, their alcoholism, the fact they wasted their life.
- You can not get to Jesus by jacking the faith of someone in your family. Salvation does not come because your grandma was really holy. Salvation does not come because your daddy is a pastor. Salvation does not come because your great uncle planted a church. Salvation comes because Jesus wants to give it to you. Your family cannot usher you in to the presence of Jesus. You have to have a relationship with Jesus. Not just an intellectual concept of Jesus. You have to know Jesus. You have to communicate with him, you have to cultivate the relationship with him. You have to be passionately in love with Jesus. Men: People should be able to tell that you are more passionate about Jesus than you are your wife.
- Your family’s track record has no bearing on who you are or what you become. You may have opportunities that other people do not have and you may be positionally set for the rest of your life but those factors are not at all important. Who you are as a person is not based on what you do or how much money you have. If you do not love what you do, regardless of how much money you make, you will be miserable. God has called all Christians to be missionaries. He has also called you to a specific calling. That thing that you are compelled to do because you can’t help it. That thing you would do even if you did not get paid. That thing that when you do it, you know you belong there because this is what God has created you to do. Ecclesiastes 9 tells us, “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might.” When you get plugged in to what God has called you to do. Do it like there is no tomorrow. Go hard in the paint, leave it all out on the field, get in the ring and fight, there is no tapout. Why? Because you are doing what God has called you to accomplish.
- God has birthed inside you, dreams, visions, ideas, cultivating a family and pointing them to Jesus, starting a business, giving your stuff and your money to the church and other charities, going on a mission trip, speaking life into your relationships, making disciples, starting a non-profit, whatever God has called you to, do it. You have already been given the authority of Jesus to go and make disciples. Do that. Also do what God is specifically calling you to do.
- The gospel is of first importance. If you are not pointing people to Jesus and you are not working your job or parenting, or cultivating your marriage and relationships to the glory of God, you are wasting your life. If you are not pointing people to Jesus, you are neglecting the first calling placed on your life which is to be a gospel-centered missionary. If God cannot trust you to with the calling he has given to all believers, how can he trust you with the work that he wants you to accomplish? A lot of Christians want God’s specific calling without being a gospel-centered missionary. It doesn’t work that way. If God cannot trust you to be in his word, reading it, devouring it, chiseling it on your heart, trusting you to obey it, how is he supposed to trust you with the specific calling he predestined you to have before the foundation of the world? You have to hold Scripture as your highest authority. You must be so in love with God that you obey his word first, before he reveals his specific calling that he has on your life.
Chase after Jesus.
Be passionate about Jesus.
Don’t waste your life.