Summary: Lessons from the genealogy of Jesus.
TEACHINGS FROM THE CHRIST CHILD
* (Faith Hill’s “A Baby Changes Everything”) The song says, “A baby changes everything” which is a true statement. When a baby comes into a home life is never the same and because of that young life the world is different. We all have been witness to a baby being born to a young couple or even adopted by a couple and the entirety of their existence was markedly changed by that one little life.
* It was into a world of darkness that the Christ child came. He came to bring light to the darkness and hope to the world. Colossians tells us that “Christ in us is the HOPE of glory.”
* 1 Peter 1:3 say “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. According to His great mercy, He has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,”
* This baby is our hope, peace, joy, and salvation. He came to bring life from death, darkness to light, and to bring hope from our hopelessness. He is Jesus the baby, the lamb, and Jesus the king.
* Now, let’s return to our text with the truth that He came to bring hope firmly place in our mind and let’s examine our text. Isn’t this an exciting text? It is a genealogy. As a general rule, most of us skip over these extended ‘begats’ and ‘fathered’ passages of scripture. However, in this one we find something very interesting. When we take into account that Matthew penned his letter in a culture that was highly patriarchal and women had few, if any, rights; it is amazing (at least to me) that 5 women are found listed among the 42 generations of men. Now for today this would be considered ‘discrimination’ but in that day, it was unheard of. For any females to be listed was almost unimaginable. Yet, here they are, five of them in all.
* For years, this truth passed me by. Yet, could it be that even in His genealogy that the Christ child was attempting to teach us eternal truths about the reason for His coming and what He desired to offer us. Jesus is our hope! This baby in a manger became the lamb of Calvary. He came to offer you and me life to the fullest, healing from the sicknesses which keep us in bondage, help to find meaning and purpose, as well as forgiveness from the sin which holds us captive.
* Today, let me call you this Christmas to hold up the banner which says, “There is HOPE in Jesus.” Even in His Genealogy we find hope. By taking a brief look at each of these five women, perhaps we can discover what Jesus desires to teach us about His coming and His Hope.
1) HOPE FOR THE FORGOTTEN -TAMAR
a) Have you ever felt forgotten? I remember being left at an uncle’s house during a sickness in family and I felt forgotten. The story of Tamar could well be known as the story of one who was forgotten. Do you remember it? We find it in Genesis 38. It is an unlikely story which by today’s thoughts would be an unacceptable story which reads like a soap-opera. Yet Tamar is mentioned in Jesus’ Genealogy. (TELL STORY)
b) Why would a woman with a story like this be included in the genealoty of God’s Son? Might I suggest that one reason is to remind us that there is hope for those who feel forgotten? God never forgets you. There have been times in my life that I have said, “Lord, please don’t forget me.” But I didn’t have to do that because He never forgets us. Even in our darkest times, His l love still reaches you & me to comfort & console. For the one who feels forgotten at this time of year, the Lord is available for you. He knows you by you name. If He remembers and includes Tamar, He remembers & cares for you.
2) HOPE FOR THE FALLEN - RAHAB –
a. While Tamar may have only played the part ‘one time’ of being a prostitute, Rahab was one. In fact, she is well known in History but she is known for being a harlot. For whatever reason, she fell into this lifestyle while living in Jericho. Yet, she had the inner desire to become more than she was. She had fallen, but she knew that with the Lord and His people, she could get up. The story is told in Joshua (Chapter 2-6). Interesting, she hid them, protected them, and then let them out of the house with a piece of cord. It was THE SAME type of instrument she used for their escape is the SAME that they used for her escape. By the way, Hebrew 11 lists her in the “Faith’s Hall of Fame.” Never forget, Jesus didn’t come into this world for the righteous, the good, or even the well; He came to call the sinner, the scandalous, & even the sick (in other words the fallen) to repentance.