The Genealogy of Jesus
Read through the genealogy of Jesus at the beginning of Matthews Gospel (Matthew 1:1-17).
How many of the names mentioned mean anything? What do we know about any of these people?
You will see that four women are mentioned amongst all the men: who are these women? If you want to look them up, see for Tamar, Genesis 38:1-3 ; Rahab, Joshua 2:1-21; Ruth, the book of Ruth; the wife of Uriah, 2 Samuel chapter 11.
You might also notice Matthews’s dilemma when he comes at last to Jesus, who is not described as the others have been, as the son of Joseph. Why not?
If Jesus was not the son of Joseph what is the point of the genealogy anyway?
What the genealogy offers is a sort of spiritual family tree for Jesus. What would a spiritual family tree of our own look like?
Make a list of those who have influenced their inner development either in person, or at second hand, for example through their writings. Remember to include the 'black sheep' - the negative influences - as well. It is possible, given time, to work out quite complicated 'relationships', or to consider the shape into which the tree has grown.
Spend some time giving thanks for your ‘spiritual family tree’.