Examining the Bible – Matthew 1

(Bible text is taken from the NIV version of the Bible as found on BibleGateway.com)

The Genealogy of Jesus the Messiah

1 This is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah1 the son of David, the son of Abraham:
2 Abraham was the father of Isaac,
Isaac the father of Jacob,
Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers,
3 Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar,
Perez the father of Hezron,
Hezron the father of Ram,
4 Ram the father of Amminadab,
Amminadab the father of Nahshon,
Nahshon the father of Salmon,
5 Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab,
Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth,
Obed the father of Jesse,
6 and Jesse the father of King David.
David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah’s wife,
7 Solomon the father of Rehoboam,
Rehoboam the father of Abijah,
Abijah the father of Asa,
8 Asa the father of Jehoshaphat,
Jehoshaphat the father of Jehoram,
Jehoram the father of Uzziah,
9 Uzziah the father of Jotham,
Jotham the father of Ahaz,
Ahaz the father of Hezekiah,
10 Hezekiah the father of Manasseh,
Manasseh the father of Amon,
Amon the father of Josiah,
11 and Josiah the father of Jeconiah and his brothers at the time of the exile to Babylon.
12 After the exile to Babylon:
Jeconiah was the father of Shealtiel,
Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel,
13 Zerubbabel the father of Abihud,
Abihud the father of Eliakim,
Eliakim the father of Azor,
14 Azor the father of Zadok,
Zadok the father of Akim,
Akim the father of Elihud,
15 Elihud the father of Eleazar,
Eleazar the father of Matthan,
Matthan the father of Jacob,
16 and Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary, and Mary was the mother of Jesus who is called the Messiah.
17 Thus there were fourteen generations in all from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the exile to Babylon, and fourteen from the exile to the Messiah.2
Joseph Accepts Jesus as His Son
18 This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit. 19 Because Joseph her husband3 was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.
20 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.4 21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus,[f] because he will save his people from their sins.”
22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23 “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”).5
24 When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. 25 But he did not consummate their marriage until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.

What do we know?

  • Jesus (or at least Joseph) was descended from Abraham and David. Joseph’s father was Jacob, his grand-father was Matthan and his great-grand-father was Eleazar.
  • Joseph and Mary were not yet married when she became pregnant by the Holy Spirit.
  • Upon learning of her pregnancy, Joseph, at first, thought to divorce her (did they get married in the meantime?), but he decided not to after an angel came to him and explained what had taken place.


1 The genealogy of Jesus includes (in order) Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Judah, Perez, Hezron, Ram, Amminadab, Nahshon, Salmon, Boaz, Obed, Jesse, King David, Solomon, Rehoboam, Abijah, Asa, Jehoshaphat, Jehoram, Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, Hezekiah, Manasseh, Amon, Josiah, Jeconiah, Shealtiel, Zerubbabel, Abihud, Eliakim, Azor, Zadok, Akim, Elihud, Eleazar, Matthan, Jacob, Joseph. This is through Joseph, even though Joseph was not related by blood, to Jesus since Jesus was born of Mary while she was still a virgin.
2 This passage indicates three sets of 14 generations (3×14=42), however there are only 41 names, including Jesus.
3 Joseph is called “her husband”. The previous sentence indicates that they weren’t married when Mary was found to be pregnant, but now Joseph is called her husband. Also, Joseph contemplates divorcing her. Either Joseph decided to marry her anyway and then thought better of it and thought about divorcing here, or the concept of marriage is different than what we are used to.
4 This passage says she was made pregnant by the Holy Spirit. Since, later, we learn that God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are the same entity, so, we believe this to be also God and Jesus.
5 This is a reference to Isaiah 7:14

Examining the Bible – Introduction

I consider myself to be a Christian in that I try to understand and emulate the teachings of Jesus. Like most people, I have done this imperfectly and inconsistently over the years.
In an effort to be a better Christian and person, I’ve decided to undertake an exercise over the next few months. I’m going to endeavor to read and critically study what I’ve read. I’ll try to examine one chapter every week. For now, I’ll just look the four gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) and the book of Acts.
I’m going to approach this with an open mind, but with the supposition that many Christians have… that is that the Bible is the inerrant word of God, or at least the inspired word of God. We’ll see how the examination goes with this in mind.
So, feel free to follow along with me as I undertake this personal examination.

The Bible ExaminedIntroductionI consider myself to be a Christian in that I try to understand and emulate the teachings of Jesus. Like most people, I have done this imperfectly and inconsistently over the years.In an effort to be a better Christian and person, I’ve decided to undertake an exercise over the next few months. I’m going to endeavor to read and critically study what I’ve read. I’ll try to examine one chapter every week. For now, I’ll just look the four gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) and the book of Acts.I’m going to approach this with an open mind, but with the supposition that many Christians have… that is that the Bible is the inerrant word of God, or at least the inspired word of God. We’ll see how the examination goes with this in mind. So, feel free to follow along with me as I undertake this personal examination.