God’s Faithful Providence
The Gospel of Matthew begins with a genealogy of the King of the Hebrews. Matthew’s Gospel was written to the Hebrew. It is written so they might know that Jesus is their King. At the time they were blinded by their own religious practices, and ceremonies, and self-righteousness as a nation, but Jesus was at that time their Messiah and King and to this day is their King.
The following is the outline Warren W. Wiersbe gives for the Gospel according to Matthew in THE BIBLE EXPOSITION COMMENTARY –
I. The Revelation Of The King – chapters 1-10;
II. The Rebellion Against The King – chapters 11-13;
III. The Retirement Of The King – chapters 14-20;
IV. The Rejection Of The King – chapters 21-27;
V. The Resurrection Of The King – chapter 28
The Gospel begins with Jesus, and His genealogy beginning with Abraham; not Adam. Abraham the father of the Hebrews and their relationship to God the Father. In the Gospel of Luke the genealogy is given backwards and ends with Adam, showing Jesus to be the Son of Man. The Gospel of Mark has no genealogy, nor does the Gospel of John. Servants have no genealogy as in Mark’s account, nor does God have genealogy as in the Gospel of John.
By way of introduction let me give some information concerning the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The human penman for this Gospel is Matthew. He was called by Jesus while sitting at his place collecting taxes: “And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he arose, and followed him” (Matthew 9:9). As a tax collector he would have been a reject to those who were religious rulers, they would have counted him a traitor, because he was collecting taxes from his people for the Roman government.
This Gospel was written to the Jews to declare and give evidence of Jesus’s royal lineage.
I. A LOOK AT THE DIFFERENCES IN THE FOUR GOSPELS.
A. First of all in Matthew; Jesus is seen as the King, and is also the Lion of the tribe of Judah.
1. John wrote in the Revelation chapter four verses six and seven, “And before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto crystal: and in the midst of the throne, and round about the throne, were four beasts full of eyes before and behind. And the first beast was like a lion, and the second beast like a calf, and the third beast had a face as a man, and the fourth beast was like a flying eagle”.
2. “As for the likeness of their faces, they four had the face of a man, and the face of a lion, on the right side: and they four had the face of an ox on the left side; they four also had the face of an eagle” (Ezekiel 1:10).
B. In Mark’s Gospel; Jesus is seen as a Servant, and is the ox/calf – Jesus Himself said in the Gospel of Mark, “For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45).
C. Then in the Gospel of Luke we see Jesus as the Son of Man, and represented, of course by the “face of a man”.
D. Finally in the Gospel of John we see Him as the Son of God, and represented by the symbol of the eagle. The eagle above all, soaring in majesty, representing the All-Knowing power of God.
E. The Royal Lineage of Jesus is given by Matthew in verses 2 – 16, and with all its blemishes.
F. In this Gospel we see a gracious King. We also see the wondrous providence of our great God and King.
II. MATTHEW’S GOD-BREATHED DECLARATION OF JESUS’S JEWISH ROYALTY (vv. 1-2).
A. David is considered, by the Jews, and by many others, to be the greatest of Israel’s kings.
B. Abraham was the patriarch of Israel, and this identifies this gospel to the Jews, and to Jesus as being Jewish.
C. Jesus, of course, is who this Gospel is really about.
D. Jesus came and showed the people, and told the people who He was, but was despised by the Jewish religious establishment, and many of the people.
1. He is defended by Matthew, as their King.
III. EVIDENCE OF JEWISH ROYALTY IN AN ANCESTRY OF SINNERS (vv. 3-6).
A. This genealogy is evidence of divine lineage of Jesus, and succession of God’s establishment of a people.
1. It is given so that man may have proof of Jesus’s true identity.
2. You could call this Gospel ‘The Identity Papers of Jesus the King’.
3. It is proof positive that Jesus is the King of kings.
B. There are five people who are included in the genealogy of Jesus that most noble people would not want to claim, but here they are in the lineage of our Lord Jesus who is King of all kings, Lord of all lords, and He rules the Universe, and all that is within it.
1. Tamar who deceived her father in law and committed an act of harlotry (Matthew 1:3; Gen. 38:13-30).
a. Tamar is a representation of sin.
2. Rahab, and she was a prostitute in the city of Jericho who was delivered from Jericho’s destruction because of her faith in the God of Israel (Matthew 1:5; Joshua 2:1-21; 6:23);
a. Rahab is the representation of faith; she later married a Jew by the name of Salmon, and these were the proud parents of Boaz.
3. Ruth – a Moabitish woman who was forbidden by law to enter the congregation.
a. Ruth represents the principle of grace (Matthew 1:5; Deut. 23:3-6; Ruth 1:16; 3:19; 4:18-22).
b. These three women were Gentile women, and Tamar was a Canaanite (Gen 38:2) one of the peoples who were to be driven from the land of Promise and killed.
4. The next woman on the list is not even named; she is instead called, “of her that had been the wife of Uriah” (v.6).
a. We know her as Bathsheba – the partner in David’s great sin of adultery and murder, and she represents the principle of forgiveness.
b. It is possible that Bathsheba was also a Gentile woman.
5. The fifth and final woman mentioned in this kingly genealogy is Mary.
a. A woman loved, respected, and admired by many.
b. Jesus alone is worthy of our worship and we need no mediator to get to Jesus.
1) He is the Mediator for us to the Father.
c. Luke recorded, by the breath of God, “Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word.” O, that we had a heart like Mary.
IV. THE SON OF GOD; BORN OF A VIRGIN (vv. 7-16).
A. God protects His purity.
B. Matthew spares nothing to proclaim the virgin birth of Jesus.
C. Mary does have something in common with the other four women of this genealogy.
1. They are all guilty of , or accused of sexual immorality.
2. “Betrothed” in that culture was much more than engagement for our culture.
a. It would have taken Joseph to write a legal letter of divorcement for the marriage to cease, but he did not do that.
b. There must have been suspicious, gossiping tongues.
3. Mary, also was a sinner, in need of a Savior, and she gave birth to her own Savior and ours. Luke 1:47 states from Mary’s Song of Praise, “My spirit hath rejoiced in God my Savior”.
D. There is a man named Jechoniah and called “Coniah” in Jeremiah 22:24-30.
1. There was a curse placed on “Coniah”, thus this line was cursed by God.
2. Because Jesus’s Father is God and not Joseph, and Jesus has the lineage through Mary He is not acquainted with the curse.
3. By legal authority, because Joseph is the adoptive father, the curse does not apply to Jesus.
E. God’s grace is so amazing; so divine; when there seems to be no way of hope; no way of salvation; God provides; that is GOD’S FAITHFUL PROVIDENCE.
-Tim A. Blankenship