Today's Reading: Matthew 1:1-17 NIV
“This is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham:” – (Matthew 1:1 NIV). Did you know that “Jesus Christ” refers directly to “The Lord is our Salvation,” and “anointed one”? Matthew’s goal in the writing of this gospel is to present Jesus as the Jewish Messiah, the promised King of Israel, the ultimate deliverer of God’s people. The genealogy that Matthew begins with echoes the genealogies of the Old Testament. It is like his gospel is a continuation of the Old Testament story of God’s gracious redemption of His wayward people. His genealogy begins and ends with three great names in Israel’s history: Abraham, David, and Messiah. The rest of the names include great fathers and mothers of the faith whose stories remind us of God’s gracious acceptance of the sinful and relentless pursuit of the marginalized.
When I joined my first step-study with Celebrate Recovery, I was completely unprepared for the vulnerability and courage it would take to include my deepest and darkest sin into the casual introduction of my name. “Hey I’m Scott. I’m energetic, spontaneous, and loving. Let’s be friends!” became “Hey I’m Scott. I’m horrible…” Well, I guess I left out the grateful believer in Jesus Christ part…which definitely brightens it up…but you get the point. Getting used to this reality of the process was slow and painful. I even spent a couple of months using lighter struggles and sugar-coated terms that made myself sound “holier.” I even told myself that I disagreed with the notion. How could we have a gospel-centered view of ourselves if we define ourselves by our sin? Well goodness… how wrong I was. Recalling the conversations of confession, healing, and freedom from my sin, I now understand that it has been strictly because of my sin that I understand the gospel at all. It is because of my sin that I can receive the gift of a healed heart and richer identity.
In Matthew 1:6, Bathsheba is referred to as the “wife of Uriah,” explicitly highlighting the devastating sin that led to her union with David and birth of Solomon. Do you recall the devastating story of adultery and murder that blighted Bathsheba’s relationship with David? In case you have too easily forgotten, there are stories like this all over the genealogy. Contrary to our tendencies, we do not worship a God who covers up sin and hides the hurt. We worship a God of mighty redemption and faithful forgiveness. It is with joy that, like Bathsheba, my story of sin and brokenness directly reveals God’s character of holiness and healing. Who are you as an adopted son or daughter in the genealogy of God’s family? What stories of brokenness and repentance have made you matter to God’s Kingdom and further glorify His name?
Are you still hiding behind the pretending and performing? Join Him in the Light.