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Series Theme: FRAMEWORKS: Matthew's Gospel

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Frameworks: Matthew's Gospel, chapter 1

 

(The objective of these ‘Frameworks' is to provide an easy-to-read layout of the text in order then to use these individual verses for verse-by-verse study or meditation. To focus each verse we have also added in italic a description of what is happening)

 

FRAMEWORKS: Matthew, chapter 1

v.1-17 The Genealogy of Jesus the Messiah
v.18-25 Joseph is instructed about Jesus

  

v.1-17 The Genealogy of Jesus the Messiah

   

v.1 This is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah the son of David, the son of Abraham:

(A general introduction picking out two key ‘players' associated with Jesus)

 

i) Abraham to David: Patriarchs to first God-chosen king

(great names – with exposed lives – and unknowns who just help the continuity: you aren me, largely unknown but maintaining our family continuity?)

v.2  Abraham was the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers,

v.3  Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar, Perez the father of Hezron, Hezron the father of Ram,

v.4 Ram the father of Amminadab, Amminadab the father of Nahshon, Nahshon the father of Salmon,

v.5 Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab, Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth, Obed the father of Jesse,

v.6  and Jesse the father of King David. David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah's wife,

 

ii) Divided Kingdom to the Exile

(kings exposed in scripture, embarrassing for some, great for others – just like life is for most of us)

v.7 Solomon the father of Rehoboam, Rehoboam the father of Abijah, Abijah the father of Asa,

v.8 Asa the father of Jehoshaphat, Jehoshaphat the father of Jehoram, Jehoram the father of Uzziah,

v.9  Uzziah the father of Jotham, Jotham the father of Ahaz, Ahaz the father of Hezekiah,

v.10  Hezekiah the father of Manasseh, Manasseh the father of Amon, Amon the father of Josiah,

v.11  and Josiah the father of Jeconiah [or Jehoiachin ] and his brothers at the time of the exile to Babylon.

 

iii) Post Exile

(a lot of unknowns but yet again providing continuity of this special family)

v.12  After the exile to Babylon:Jeconiah was the father of Shealtiel, Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel,

v.13 Zerubbabel the father of Abihud, Abihud the father of Eliakim, Eliakim the father of Azor,

v.14  Azor the father of Zadok, Zadok the father of Akim, Akim the father of Elihud,

v.15 Elihud the father of Eleazar, Eleazar the father of Matthan, Matthan the father of Jacob,

v.16 and Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary, and Mary was the mother of Jesus who is called the Messiah.

v.17 Thus there were fourteen generations in all from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the exile to Babylon, and fourteen from the exile to the Messiah.

 

v.18-25 Joseph is instructed about Jesus

 

v.18 (Luke tells us about Mary but Joseph doesn't know it yet) This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit.

v.19 (hurt righteousness can go the wrong way) Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.

v.20 (yet God straightens him out) But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.

v. 21 (you will step-father the saviour) She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, [Jesus is the Greek form of Joshua, which means the Lord saves.] because he will save his people from their sins.”

v.22 (just like Isaiah had said ) All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet:

v.23  (a virgin birth to bring the one who is God with us) “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” [Isa 7:14 (which means “God with us”).

v.24 (it is so real, Joseph obeys) When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife.

v.25 (he honours her and protects her and was obedient) But he did not consummate their marriage until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.

 

 

[General Notes: Here are just a few comments to help the new reader along:

i) Why is Matthew's family tree different from Luke's? Well first of all Matthew finishes with Joseph while Luke starts with words that could indicate that his tree isn't Joseph's but perhaps Mary's instead.

ii) The different Gospel writers, although often using common material, in their own unique contributions, each show a different emphasis. Matthew's was to show to Jews that Jesus is the Messiah who has come to bring in the kingdom of God. Part of the way he seeks to do that is by quoting lots of Old Testament prophecies

iii) Jesus is referred to as the son of the greatest king of Israel, David, and son of Abraham, the man of faith, the father of the Jewish race. Matthew identifies Jesus' family with a Jewish royal line, and the line that goes back to the father of the race. Jesus' home is within the race chosen and raised and blessed by God. Now why would Matthew bother with this form of tree anyway? Well, often in Jesus' ministry the Jews sneered at him and said “You can't be the Messiah because you don't come from a royal family!” Matthew seeks to show that Jesus'  family name  was a good name with a royal pedigree. The post exile period links the royal dynasty to Joseph and thus gives Jesus a royal family title.

iv) Jewish writers (Old Testament especially) weren't concerned to ensure that every person in the family tree were included, only that the flow of the tree was clear.

v) Next observe the women, who are important to God, who are included in this traditionally male family tree. There was:

•  Tamar (v.3) who brought about her pregnancy to continue the family tree through strange ways (see Genesis 38),

•  Rahab, a Gentile prostitute who, by faith, earned her place with Israel (see Joshua 2),

•  Ruth, a Gentile who married into the Israelite fold and remained in faith (see book of Ruth), and

•  Uriah's wife stolen by David (see 2 Samuel 11 & 12), a reminder of the shame of man and grace of God.

If we consider, as we do, all the New Testament inspired by God then we find in this family tree that almost seems to go out of its way to include both these women and a large number of men (kings) in the tree, who by and large didn't do very well, we see something quite remarkable: God includes in this tree people who got it wrong and yet were still included in God's purposes as He used Israel to reveal Himself to the world, as well as reveal the sinfulness of mankind that needed a Saviour