How many of us know the name of our great-grandmother? Or, our great-greats? I have a Sara Jane and a plain Sarah. I also have a John Henry Carter back there, the only believing relative I’m aware of. Years ago I did an extensive genealogy search, complete with photos and stories. One family member was displeased with me for overturning dirt.
Most of us have come from a mixed heritage. We all have it, even Jesus.
It would be nice to boast of a heritage of those coming over on the Mayflower, but my family was more like the Irish immigrants stowed in steerage on the Titanic. Either way, our families are an heirloom, and we get only one group of humans assigned to us by DNA and God’s creative design.
Not even Jesus had a sinless lineage. In the first 17 verses of Matthew, we see a list of the boring begats, or are they? Genealogies are important because they demonstrate the mystery and majesty of God’s plan.
A few identifiable names among the unpronounceable include four women. In a time when women were not included in Jewish history, only father to son, it’s amazing to see the four names recorded as part of the royals leading up to the birth of the Messiah.
The God-inspired Scriptures deemed profitable for us tells of the ancestry scattered with shame. Jesus wanted His family recorded, all of them.
Tamar, the scheming widow yearned for offspring and posed as a shrine prostitute to trick her father-in-law, Judah, resulting in pregnancy to preserve the line (Genesis 38).
Rahab, the Jericho harlot, sheltered spies and later was known for faith and courage. (Joshua 2).
Bathsheba, the woman involved in infidelity with King David, yet years later became the mother of Solomon, an ancestor of Jesus. (2 Samuel 11).
And, the dear one, Ruth, different from the other ladies, but from the despised nation of Moab. Ruth was not a Jew, yet God chose her to be in the line of the Kinsman Redeemer (Ruth 1-4).
Worthy accounts of a turn-around. . . a desperate housewife, two prostitutes, and an adulteress, all part of the Messianic family tree.
The stories are not about the sin, but about the grace of God.
Our Savior had a background much like you and me. Every one of us has a lifeline stained with sin, which is the reason for verse :18, Now the birth of Jesus was as follows . . .
When I look through the tattered scrapbooks, filled with black and white remembrances of long ago . . . I see grace on every page.
The photo above is my great-great grandmother, Lizzie. . . . she looks nice.
To my great-great-greats, I can leave a blessing or a curse by the way I live.
How can our lives influence the next generation?
The book of genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.