The Women in Jesus’ Genealogy

Scripture Passage: Matthew 1:1-17

Five women are mentioned in the genealogy of Jesus. Their inclusion is remarkable because they lived in a time when genealogies rarely contained even a single female name. So why are these women included?

What does the mention of these women signify? These five women have five amazing stories that can teach each of us about the true meaning of Christmas.

Tamar | A Story of Hope

Tamar is the first woman mentioned in Matthew’s genealogy. Her story is a story of desperation, grief, and depravity and yet reminds us that in place of desperate acts and broken hopes, the coming Messiah would bring real hope into a needy world.

With whom can you share the story of hope this Christmas?

Rahab | A Story of Faith

Throughout Scripture, Rahab is referred to as a prostitute or harlot — perhaps because it demonstrates the fact that God can redeem anyone and anything for his purpose. However, Rahab’s faith earned her a place in the lineage of Jesus. Her faith was more powerful than her failure.

What failures can you entrust to God this Christmas?

Ruth | A Story of Lovingkindness

Ruth was a young Moabite women who had married into a Jewish family. She chose to care for her widowed mother-in-law rather than return to her own people. Ruth eventually married a man named Boaz. Their son became the grandfather of King David.

To whom can you demonstrate kindness and compassion this Christmas?

Bathsheba | A Story of Grace

Bathsheba entered into the story in the most heartbreaking way. After committing adultery with Bathsheba, King David orchestrated the death of her husband. She eventually became one of King David’s wives and the mother of Solomon, the wise king.

How can grace heal a broken heart? To whom can you demonstrate grace this Christmas?

Mary | A Story of Fulfillment

Mary was an ordinary girl on the threshold of marriage. But God planned from the very beginning for her life to be anything but ordinary. He planned to use Mary to fulfill his plan of salvation for a broken world. Her story is one of fulfillment as she gave birth to Jesus.

What might God be able to do through your life if you gave Him complete control?

Lessons from the Genealogy

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Scripture Passage: Matthew 1:1-16

The genealogy of Jesus as shown in Matthew 1 is a passage that many of us skim past, but there are several powerful reminders we see in this passage that have real implications on how we live our lives.

Jesus is a real person in real history.
The story of Jesus is not to be compared with Greek mythology, folklore, or local legends. The Biblical accounts are of real places and real people–able to be verified and confirmed like any other accurate historical account. What does this mean for us? The story of Jesus is not just a cute bedtime story. What we read in the Bible is the real-life love story of a God who is pursuing his creation to bring them back into a restored loving relationship.

God’s timing is perfect.
In the genealogy we see that God chose a specific place in the order of these generations to have Jesus enter the world. Galatians 4:4 says, “When the time came to completion, God sent his Son…” There were many generations longing for a savior. Have you ever asked God, “Where are you?” In the same way that Jesus came in his perfect timing, God works in our lives according to His perfect timing.

Jesus came for freedom.
There are amazing layers of meaning in the genealogy shared in Matthew 1. One of which is the significance of the number of generations documented in the passage. The symmetry and symbolism point to Jesus being the fulfillment of the Jewish tradition known as the year of Jubilee–a special time when slaves are set free and debts are forgiven. Galatians 5:1 says, “For freedom, Christ set us free.” Jesus did not come to condemn us or institute new laws to follow–rather, He came to provide a way for us to find freedom in a relationship with Him.

Think About It & Talk About It:

  • How does it impact your life knowing that Jesus was a real person living in a real place in history?
  • How has God shown up according to his perfect timing your life?
  • What is something you are waiting on God for right now?
  • What does it mean for you to know that Jesus came specifically to provide freedom and not judgement on you?