The gospel of Matthew was written by Matthew, also called Levi (Matthew 9:9-13) the disciple of Christ. Of course with all of Scripture working through Matthew the human author, was the primary Author, the Holy Spirit. "Knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someones own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit." (2 Peter 1:20-21)
The gospel opens with the book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ. This is important for Matthew's purpose is to prove to his Jewish readers primarily that Jesus Christ is the son of David, the son of Abraham. He is the One who the Scriptures had promised would come. He is the One that Abraham and David pointed too. The genealogy also points to the fact that God is working in human history. Matthew arranges this genealogy is 3 parts each part has 14 generations. The first leading to David, the second leading to exile in Babylon and the third leading up to Christ.
The amazing thing about the genealogy is the inclusion of women. It was not the custom to list women in the genealogies, the man was always listed. The women listed in Christ genealogy shows the true nature of the Messiah, the true nature of God. The first woman Tamar was involved in a sexual relationship with her father-in-law Judah. (Genesis 38) Rahab was a harlot. (Joshua 2) Ruth was a Moabite, and under a special curse (Ruth 1:4) (Deuteronomy 23:3-5), Uriah's wife Bathsheba was David's downfall. (2 Samuel 11) and Mary fulfills Isaiah 7:14 "Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call His name Immanuel."
We may think that the genealogies in the Bible are boring or have no purpose for us today, but we should understand that God is showing His Eternal Being. He is showing that He has been carrying out His plans and purposes from the time of Adam, Abraham, David. Throughout the bad times, exile in Babylon, and the good times, the monarchy of Israel, and their return from exile. God is saying that I have worked in human history from the beginning and I am working now. The genealogies cover thousands of years and the Eternal God has been carrying forth His will in the affairs of humankind.
The women in the genealogy of Jesus Christ point to the fact that God often does the unexpected and chooses the unlikely. None of us are worthy in our own to become children of God, yet here we are chosen by God. Redeemed by Jesus Christ, living, breathing proofs that God is still working in human history, that God is still choosing the unlikely, adding to the genealogy of Jesus Christ.
Let us thank God for His abiding Presence - let us thank Him that the fulfillment of His will to His Glory is the absolute best for all of creation.
Next time - The Birth of Jesus Christ.