THROUGH THE BIBLE IN THREE YEARS

This program of daily Scripture studies is designed to help you in daily honoring God with adoration.

Each day, Monday through Friday, a Scripture with commentary is posted.

We have a great friend in Gary Godard. He has set up an archive page. To view ALL the prior Scripture studies by book and chapter, just clik


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TODAY'S SCRIPTURE STUDY

MATTHEW

CHAPTER 1

INTRODUCTION: WHEN: The gospel of Matthew was written before 70AD. There is no mention of Jerusalem having been destroyed.

BY WHOM: Matthew was a Jew by birth, and familiar with the Old Testament. Matthew was called by Jesus to become a disciple, and was with Him until "the day that He was taken up.." (Acts 1:22). Therefore, he was a competent witness of all that Christ did.

Matthew was a tax collector, and his interest in statistical information give us some special insight. For instance, in Chapter 1, verse 17, Matthew states there were "fourteen generations" from Abraham to David, then "fourteen generations" from David until the fall of the kingdom and the Babylonian captivity, then "fourteen generations" to when Christ was born.

There is no doubt that this tax collector is the same "Levi" referred to by Mark (2:14) and Luke (5:27).

PURPOSE AND THEME:
Matthew quotes the Old Testament in as many as 93 places (as opposed to 49 in Mark, 80 in Luke, and 33 in John). The emphasis is placed upon Jesus being the Messiah Who fulfilled all Old Testament prophecy. Thus the theme is to provide an account which communicates documentary evidence that faith in Jesus Christ is the manner of eternal salvation to which God has been working His eternal plan from before the ages.

CHAPTER 1

1 The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. 2 Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judas and his brethren; 3 And Judas begat Phares and Zara of Thamar; and Phares begat Esrom; and Esrom begat Aram; 4 And Aram begat Aminadab; and Aminadab begat Naasson; and Naasson begat Salmon; 5 And Salmon begat Booz of Rachab; and Booz begat Obed of Ruth; and Obed begat Jesse; 6 And Jesse begat David the king; and David the king begat Solomon of her that had been the wife of Urias; 7 And Solomon begat Roboam; and Roboam begat Abia; and Abia begat Asa; 8 And Asa begat Josaphat; and Josaphat begat Joram; and Joram begat Ozias; 9 And Ozias begat Joatham; and Joatham begat Achaz; and Achaz begat Ezekias; 10 And Ezekias begat Manasses; and Manasses begat Amon; and Amon begat Josias; 11 And Josias begat Jechonias and his brethren, about the time they were carried away to Babylon: 12 And after they were brought to Babylon, Jechonias begat Salathiel; and Salathiel begat Zorobabel; 13 And Zorobabel begat Abiud; and Abiud begat Eliakim; and Eliakim begat Azor; 14 And Azor begat Sadoc; and Sadoc begat Achim; and Achim begat Eliud; 15 And Eliud begat Eleazar; and Eleazar begat Matthan; and Matthan begat Jacob; 16 And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ. 17 So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David until the carrying away into Babylon are fourteen generations; and from the carrying away into Babylon unto Christ are fourteen generations.

This is the book which concerns the "generation of" (or genesis of) Jesus Christ. It is a gospel account of His birth, life, death and resurrection. It is an account of JESUS, the same name as Joshua, which means "YAHWEH IS SALVATION." And it is the account of JESUS CHRIST, the name which represent MESSIAH, or "the Anointed One."

First, it is noted that Jesus Christ is born of the prophesied line of Abraham and David (vs 1). Matthew traces Jesus' lineage through the family of Joseph. This historical descendency is careful to point out that, of the 12 sons of Jacob, JUDAH (verse 2) was the point of His descendency. Old Testament prophecy said that "The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be." (Gen 49:10)

One can't help but also notice verse 6. Solomon was the son of David, through the marriage of David to Bathsheba. God does forgive sin, and God does work THROUGH the sins of man to accomplish HIS purposes. This story relates that God can and does work through man's sin, brings disiplinary justice, and still delivers His promises.

Notice the carefully worded verse 16. Joseph was Mary's husband, but Mary delivered Jesus, "born of a virgin." He was HER seed, not man's seed. ((See further documentation of this virgin birth in verse 25.)) The first prophecy of the Messiah is actually in Genesis 3:15. There God promises that the "seed" of a "woman" will be the defeat of Satan. "And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel."(Gen 3:15)

While Satan bruised Jesus' heel (through the cross), Jesus crushed Satan's head! He dealt the crushing and defeating blow when He arose from the grave! Death is the result of sin (Rom. 6:23), but God has gained victory for us over death!

Even through all the weaknesses, frailties, and sinfulness of man, God delivered Messiah Jesus just as He had promised.

18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. 19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily. 20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. 21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. 22 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, 23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. 24 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: 25 And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.

Matthew has traced Jesus' lineage from the family of Joseph. He has been careful to point out that though Jesus was born of Joseph's FAMILY, he was not born OF Joseph, but of Mary. Now, Matthew gives the story of Jesus' birth through the viewpoint of Joseph.

In the time of Jesus' birth, it was common for couples to be "engaged" through an "arranged" marriage. That marriage could have been arranged from Mary's birth! However, wedding plans had not yet been made, and the couple had had no conjugal relations. Then Mary became PREGNANT!! ((The story of HOW Mary became pregnant is in Luke 1:26-35))

Joseph was a "just man" and was certainly considering an annulment of this engagement. However, while he was considering this, he was also a compassionate man and didn't want to make Mary a "public example." The aspect of bringing her pregnancy to public light also carried the penalty of STONING according to Jewish law. ((see Leviticus 20:10)) Joseph's heart did not want that. He was having a conflict in his heart. But then, an angel appeared to Joseph during a dream with some news.

The child to be born of Mary is "JESUS" (YAHWEH is salvation). He was born of "the HOLY GHOST," conceived by a miracle from God. AND that child will "save His people from their sins." The child is the King of all ages to whom all people belong! He will usher in the means of eternal salvation from the condemnation of sin.

Therefore, Joseph was not to be "afraid" to complete the wedding ceremony. For this miraculous conception came about according to prophecy (see verse 23 above which refers to Isaiah 7:14)).

The child to be born is "IMMANUEL," or "God WITH us!" He is INCARNATE GOD, clothed in flesh, appearing unto men!

Again, let us see that Joseph was a "just man." He believed God. He trusted God. He built his life upon the truths of God and on being obedient as a servant to God. Therefore, he DID as God SAID! He completed the marriage immediately, and did not have sexual relations with Mary until AFTER Jesus was born.

Peter Larson wrote: “Despite our efforts to keep Him out, God intrudes. The life of Jesus is bracketed by two impossibilities: a virgin’s womb and an empty tomb. Jesus entered our world through a door marked ‘No Entrance’ and left through a door marked ‘No Exit.’”

In this Christmas season, let us be reminded that God came in the Person of Jesus "when the fulness of the time was come." Incarnate glory physically entered time and earth at the perfect moment. For His glorious birth must lead to a death caused by the most cruel human instrument ever known - the cross. In that perfect historical time, "God commendeth (demonstrated) His love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died (on the cross) for us." (Romans 5:8)

He came in an impossible manner, born of a virgin, fulfilling the prophecies:
"And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel." (Gen 3:15)
"Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive , and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel (God with us)." (Isa 7:14)

He came for an improbable reason, to offer forgiveness of sins, and redemption to all mankind - "To redeem them that were under the law." "Under the law," we are condemned, for we cannot live up to that perfection. But God, in Christ, lived up to that perfection and then offered His perfection on the cross to pay for our imperfection.

He came to offer an inexplicable gift - "the adoption of sons." How? John 1:12 tells us "..as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:". To all who believe Him as Christ and surrender to Him as Lord, He becomes the adoption writ whereby we are made "sons of GOD!"

PLEASE CONTINUE WITH US IN BIBLE STUDY TOMORROW.