Mar. 19, 2017

The Genealogy of Jesus, a Beautiful Picture of Redemption

Luke 3:23-38 from the daily reading in the One Year Bible

Genealogy of Jesus

When He began His ministry, Jesus Himself was about thirty years of age, being, as was supposed, the son of Joseph, the son of Eli, 24 the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, the son of Melchi, the son of Jannai, the son of Joseph, 25 the son of Mattathias, the son of Amos, the son of Nahum, the son of Hesli, the son of Naggai, 26 the son of Maath, the son of Mattathias, the son of Semein, the son of Josech, the son of Joda, 27 the son of Joanan, the son of Rhesa, the son of Zerubbabel, the son of Shealtiel, the son of Neri, 28 the son of Melchi, the son of Addi, the son of Cosam, the son of Elmadam, the son of Er, 29 the son of Joshua, the son of Eliezer, the son of Jorim, the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, 30 the son of Simeon, the son of Judah, the son of Joseph, the son of Jonam, the son of Eliakim, 31 the son of Melea, the son of Menna, the son of Mattatha, the son of Nathan, the son of David, 32 the son of Jesse, the son of Obed, the son of Boaz, the son of Salmon, the son of Nahshon, 33 the son of Amminadab, the son of Admin, the son of Ram, the son of Hezron, the son of Perez, the son of Judah, 34 the son of Jacob, the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham, the son of Terah, the son of Nahor, 35 the son of Serug, the son of Reu, the son of Peleg, the son of Heber, the son of Shelah, 36 the son of Cainan, the son of Arphaxad, the son of Shem, the son of Noah, the son of Lamech, 37 the son of Methuselah, the son of Enoch, the son of Jared, the son of Mahalaleel, the son of Cainan, 38 the son of Enosh, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.


In Genesis 3:14-15 following the fall of Adam and Eve, God says this to the serpent:   “Because you have done this, Cursed are you more than all cattle, And more than every beast of the field; On your belly you will go, And dust you will eat All the days of your life; And I will put enmity Between you and the woman, And between your seed and her seed; He shall bruise you on the head, And you shall bruise him on the heel.”     God already planned for the birth of Jesus. He knew, even then, this list of names which appears in today’s text, the genealogy of Jesus. When we look at that list of names, many we know very little about, but some are well known, with a variety of stories. One thing we can see as we look over that list is that God’s perfect Son, was born through imperfect people. The redeemer was born of those needing redemption. It begins, of course with Adam and Eve and the fall of man. Yet through this genealogy of Jesus we can see the marvelous plan and power of redemption.

Jacob, the son of Isaac deceived his older brother Esau, to take his birthright. Then he deceived his father to steal Esau’s blessing. In Genesis 27:35-36 it says:  “Your brother came deceitfully and has taken away your blessing.” Then he said, “Is he not rightly named Jacob, for he has supplanted me these two times? He took away my birthright, and behold, now he has taken away my blessing.”   In the very next generation we see Perez born to Judah. The account of the birth of Perez is found in Genesis 38. Perez was born to Judah, not by his own wife, but rather outside of marriage, to Tamar, his son’s widow, who had posed as a prostitute in order to trick Judah. As we move forward, we come to David, the son of Jesse. We know well the story of David who rose from being the least of his father’s sons to his place as king over all of Israel. It was upon the throne of David, that the promised Messiah would rule. What is interesting though about the line of David which led to the birth of Christ is that of all the wives David had and all the sons from those wives, in today’s text the line runs through Nathan, in the genealogy found in Matthew it list Solomon. It was in fact Solomon who assumed the throne after David, but Nathan was his brother. Both Nathan and Solomon were born to David by Bathsheba, the one with whom David had an adulterous relationship before he caused the death of her husband and then married her.

I am sure that if we were to research the lives of all those listed in the genealogy of Jesus, we would find those guilty of every sin known to man. There were murderers, adulterers, prostitutes. There were those who drank too much wine, those who lied and cheated and on and on. The genealogy of Jesus is much more than a list of names tracing His human ancestry. The genealogy of Jesus is a beautiful picture of God’s plan for the redemption, known and spoken by Him in the garden, revealed in the life, the death and the resurrection of Christ.1 peter 3:18 says:  Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit.    Jesus died once for all the sins of all the people. The just, the righteous the perfect sacrifice for the unjust, the unrighteous and imperfect world.

Regardless of what sin may have affected your life it is not too great for the redeeming power of the cross. John 3:16 says: "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.”     1 John 1:9 says:  If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.    The only sin which cannot be forgiven by the power of the cross, by the redeeming power of Christ, is the sin we will not acknowledge and confess. If we confess our sins, He forgives and cleanses us. In Isaiah 43:25 God says:  "I, even I, am the one who wipes out your transgressions for My own sake, And I will not remember your sins.”   When God forgives our sin, He no longer holds it against us. Jesus redeems us. He reconciles us to God and restores us to all that God intended. In Genesis 3, God spoke of His plan for the redemption of man. That redemption, spoken of then, documented in the genealogy of Jesus and revealed in the life, the death and the resurrection of Christ, restores us to God’s original plan for man. We are created in His image and likeness and through Christ we are restored to that image.

Thank You heavenly Father, Lord Jesus Christ and precious Holy Spirit for the plan of redemption, reconciliation and restoration, revealed in your word and through the perfect Son of God, Jesus Christ.   Amen