Daily Archives: March 28, 2010

The Genealogy Issue:Is there a Contradiction between the Genealogy of Matthew and of Luke?

We have 2 genealogies of Jesus. In Matthew we have, without the slightest doubt, the genealogy of JOSEPH but in Luke we have that of MARY.

THE GENEALOGY IN MATTHEW:

Matthew 1: 1-17:

First notice that in Matthew we have the ROYAL lineage: it goes from the past to the future, from ABRAHAM through DAVID to JESUS, while Luke does NOT have the royal lineage after David, going from the present to the past, from JESUS to Adam. David was the second king of the Jews and was succeeded by Solomon, in Matt the genealogy goes like this: DAVID, SOLOMON, Rehoboam….Jechoniah ( last king of Judah ).

THE GENEALOGY IN LUKE

Luc 3:22-28:

In Luke we have Jesus….NATHAN, then DAVID, his father. Nathan was NEVER king , but he was the son of David. So we have 2 different genealogies obviously, one is the official, legal one, based on the father ( Matt’s genealogy for Joseph ).

THE GENEALOGY IN MATTHEW AGAIN

First thing first: Matthew undeniably says Jesus was descended from MARY, he says it in an INDIRECT but clear way:
Matthew 1:1:

” A record of the genealogy of Jesus Christ the son of David, the son of Abraham ”
Notice it calls Jesus the SON of DAVID and the SON of ABRAHAM. Now a man cannot have 2 fathers. Here we have a Semitism. The word son in the OT means a real son but it also means DESCENDANT, so Matt is saying Jesus descended from King David and Abraham. In fact ask any rabbi and he will tell you they call the Messiah MASHIACH BEN DAVID.

MATTHEW TELLS US THE GENEALOGY IS THAT OF JOSEPH

Matthew 1:16:

” And Jacob begot Joseph, the husband of Mary, of who was born Jesus, who is called Christ. ”

He tells us Jacob had a father, or maybe ancestor called Jacob. He tells us Joseph was the husband of Mary. Then he shifts the emphasis to ” of who ( note: of who? of Mary ) was born Jesus, who is called Messiah. ” Matt is careful NOT to say: ” and Joseph begot Jesus. ”

Matthew uses the Greek word that literally means begot, but when you analyze his genealogy you see he skips several generations in places and here begot is an expression for ancestor or father, depending on the case. That is why many translations have it as ” was the father of ” instead of begot ,where father can also mean ancestor.

MATTHEW TELLS US OF THE VIRGIN BIRTH

Matthew 1:18-21:

” This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.

But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, ” Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins. ” ”

JOSEPH WAS NOT THE FATHER BUT THE MESSIAH WOULD HAVE TO OBLIGATORILY DESCEND FROM DAVID

According to the prophecies the Messiah would have to descend from David, but since Joseph is not the real father, even though descended from David, and Matt says explicitely that Jesus really was a DESCENDANT of David, then by logic it would have to be through the mother. The mother would be a desecendant of David.

SO WHY HAVE JOSEPH’S GENEALOGY AT ALL?

The reason is that in Antiquity, and probably today also, when you give one’s genealogy it is always on the FATHER’S side. It was not the custom to give the genealogy on the mother’s side. So Matt gives us the OFFICIAL genealogy of Jesus, official but not the real one, since Joseph was the husband of Mary and he was the LEGAL father of Jesus, his adopted father, so to speak.

THE GENEALOGY IN LUKE AGAIN

First of all Luke tells us DIRECTLY that Mary descended from David in Luke 1:26-33 and also notice that it says a VIRGIN will give birth, so no father is involved. But then it has the phrase ” of his father David “. Here again we have a Semitism. In the OT father means a real father but it also means ANCESTOR. Since Joseph had nothing to do with the birth of Jesus and since the prophecies say that the Messiah would be a descendant of David, then it was obligatory. So here the problem is solved because Mary was also a descendant of David.

THE TEXT IN LUKE ABOUT THE VIRGIN BIRTH:

Luc 1:26-33:

” In the sixth month, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, ” Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you. ”

Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, ” Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus.

He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the THRONE of his FATHER DAVID, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end. ”

THE LUKE GENEALOGY:

It is in Luc 3:22-28 and many say it is the GENEALOGY of JOSEPH, not of JESUS, because it begins with:

” Now Jesus himself was about thirty years old when he began his ministry. He was the son, so it was thought, of Joseph, the son of Heli, the son of Matthat,
the son of Levi, the son of Melki,the son of Jannai, the son of Joseph, etc.”

AHA,HERE IS THE PROOF THE GENEALOGY IS THAT OF JOSEPH, NOT JESUS’:

There we have the proof, it says Joseph was the son of Heli, who was the son of X, etc. But when you read the LITERAL translation it is:

” And Jesus himself was beginning to be about thirty years of age, being, as was SUPPOSED, SON OF Joseph, OF HELI, OF Matthat, OF Levi, etc.”JAMES TABOR in his book highlights that is how it is in the original Greek.

Just check out Young’s Literal Translation in biblegateway.com where the word ” son ” is in parenthesis.

WHAT ARE YOU TRYING TO SAY?

That the EMPHASIS is on JESUS, not Joseph, so it can also be written as ( by taking out ” as was supposed, son of Joseph ” ):

” And JESUS himself was beginning to be about thirty years of age, being, OF ELI, of Matthat, of Levi, etc.”

I STILL DON’T UNDERSTAND:

Since the EMPHASIS is on Jesus, and Joseph is just put in as ” the supposed father ” then the phrase ” Jesus was OF HELI, of Matthat, of Levi, etc. ” would mean he was descended literally from Heli, etc. Since Jesus had as his mother Mary, and since Jesus did not have a Heli as a father, in fact, no father at all, then Heli would be Mary’s father.

Jesus,of Heli,a descendant of Heli,through his mother Mary,who was his daughter.

THAT IS ONLY A CHRISTIAN ARGUMENT

Then read JAMES TABOR, a respected NT scholar who is no Christian at all, who wrote THE JESUS DYNASTY(2006),chapter 2,” A son of David? “, pages 48-57. He believes Jesus was an illegitimate child, no virgin birth, no resurrection, that Jesus was not God and that his tomb is somewhere in Galilee. He also argues that Luke has Mary’s genealogy. Again, because in Luke the emphasis is on JESUS, not on Joseph.And he argues based on the actaul Greek used.

THE CURSE ON JECHONIAH

In JEREMIAH 22:30 the last king of Judah, Jechoniah is cursed for being evil and told NONE of his descendants will ever be KING of the Jews.

” This is what the LORD says:
“Record this man as if childless,
a man who will not prosper in his lifetime,
for none of his offspring will prosper,
none will sit on the throne of David
or rule anymore in Judah. ”

In the TALMUD ( Babylonian Talmud Sanhedrin 37b ) it is said that later Jechoniah repented and was forgiven by God, and the curse revoked, but that is NOT in the OT,as far as I know. So the Jewish and Christian writers knew that the Messiah had to be from David but not through Jechoniah. If Jesus was really the biological son of Joseph then he would have been disqualified as the Messiah since Jsoeph was descended from Jechoniah.

THE PROTOEVANGELIUM OF JAMES

Written in 150 AD it may contain some reliable information. There the parents of Mary are said to be JOACHIM and ANNA. JOACHIM is a form of ELIAKIM, like YEHOSHUAH is a form of JOSHUA, JECHONIAH of CONIAH, Mike of Michael ,Tommy of Thomas, Rick of Richard. It is possible HELI is a short form for Eliakim, so argues JAMES TABOR,in his book THE JESUS DYNASTY.

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