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A Family Tree

A record of the genealogy of Jesus Christ the son of David, the son of Abraham.
Matthew 1:1

Do you know who your ancestors are? Has your family kept records through the years? The search for a family’s genealogy often becomes a hobby, even a passion.

The Old Testament provides many detailed family histories. Family heritage was the key to leadership as God spoke to many regarding babies to be born. Can we ever forget Abraham and Sarah? Well past normal child bearing years, Sarah gave birth to Isaac. God had told Abraham that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars (Genesis 15:5).

A tax collector before Matthew became a follower of Jesus, his birth name was Levi. It was to be expected the he would begin writing one of the four gospels with a detailed family tree to validate the ancestors of Jesus.

Matthew writes to show Jesus as the promised Messiah. Some Jews rejected Jesus as the Messiah, so Matthew wrote to tell that Jesus’ birth, life, and death on the cross were the fulfillment of the Old Testament promises.

As you read the first chapter of Matthew, are you tempted to just skip over the names of Jesus’ family tree? Yes, there are forty-six names, all ancestors of Jesus. Note that they were a very diverse group. Some were staunch pillars of faith, like Abraham. Some had shady reputations like Rahab and Tamar. Others were very ordinary, names we find unfamiliar. Manasseh and Abijah were actually mean and evil. 

Does any of this sound like it could have been your family tree? You may have what we may be tempted to identify some of our ancestors as skeletons in the closet.

Be encouraged to read again and again that God uses all types of people to accomplish His plan. A great song Ordinary People tells this story well. So where are you? With our bumps and faulty decisions, He can and will use us.


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