- Matthew opens his gospel by calling Jesus… “Jesus the Messiah”
- Notes that he is the son of David, the son of Abraham
- Notes 4 women and mothers among 42 fathers: Tamar, Rahab, Ruth and Bathsheba before mentioning the 5th women and mother—Mary.
- Notes there are 14 generations from Abraham to David, from David to the Babylonian exile and from the exile to the birth of the Messiah
- Matthew calls Jesus the Messiah 4x in this chapter, 3x just in verses 16-18.
- Matthew highlights that the birth of the long awaited Messiah comes through a virgin named Mary who was found to be pregnant by the Holy Spirit.
- Mary’s fiancé, Joseph, plans to quietly divorce Mary when he finds out she is pregnant
- Therefore God sends an angel to Joseph in a dream instructing him to take Mary home as his wife and to name her child Jesus.
- Matthew notes that all this took place to fulfill what the Lord said through the prophet that a virgin would conceive and they would call him Immanuel (which means “God with us”)
- Joseph obeyed God and followed his instructions to take Mary home as his wife though he did not have sex with Mary until after she gave birth to their son who Joseph named Jesus.
- Don’t forget that God likes to color “outside the lines” of stuffy religious ways. Before one can object that Jesus was born of a virgin, Matthew reminds us some colorful (rated R) women that God used throughout the royal lineage of David. In what ways am I putting God in a box? If he used Tamar, Rahab and Bathsheba in such redemptive ways, am I not open how God could be using misfits today for his purposes?
- Joseph feared God and had a plan… and then his plan took a bad turn when he found out that Mary was pregnant. So Joseph had plan B - divorce Mary. God had a plan C. Marry Mary and join me in my work. How is God asking me to obey him today… even if it costs me hardship?
Heavenly Father, thank you for sending Jesus, THE MESSIAH, to be born in a feeding trough to a young virgin through a lineage of colorful people and stories of you coloring outside the lines I would predict. Lord, Matthew 1 helps me to step back and be ready for whatever unpredictable way you may interrupt my life and plans and bring about your kingdom in your ways. Forgive me for the times that I hold too tightly to the ways I think or want you to work and give me the grace to submit to your sovereign purposes that you reveal along the way. Immanuel, thank you coming to earth to “be with us.” May we be more and more like you. In your name we pray. Amen.
Posted on Wed, August 19, 2015
by Brian Landers