Wrecked & Redeemed

Out of Place Ornaments on Jesus' Family Tree

These are the stories of five women scattered, like out-of-place ornaments on a Christmas tree, on Jesus’ family tree, as chronicled in the Matthew 1 genealogy.

Nearly every family has a set of stories they tell over and over. It may be how Grandpa came to this country with only five dollars in his pocket. Perhaps you have an ancestor who fought in a famous battle, or you’re related to royalty. It may be the story of romance, rescue, or reconciliation.

Some of you have worked to trace your genealogies for ten plus generations. My mom has. My brothers and I love to tell the story of how our maternal grandparents met on a boat heading back from China right before World War II. Both died before I was born, yet their stories still influence me today.

The stories we remember and retell shape us. Stories explain where we came from, shed light on who we are now, and guide our steps as we move forward in life.

The Bible is the story of us all. From Genesis’ first words to Revelation’s last lines, the Bible is the history of God’s loving and giving relationship with humanity.

Each sinner’s story is unique. Each salvation story is significant. Each chapter is essential, including the genealogical record found in Matthew 1:1-17, which will be the focus of this “Wrecked & Redeemed” series.

In this series, we will be revisiting compelling and dramatic stories in the Bible. These are the stories of five women scattered, like out-of-place ornaments on a Christmas tree, on Jesus’ family tree, as chronicled in Matthew 1.

We will closely examine each of these ornaments because they tell of God’s incredible redemption story. As we better understand their stories, we will also better understand our own.

Often when family tree stories are shared, there is a tendency to skip over or at least gloss over the dimmer and more despicable lowlights and focus on the highlights. This genealogy does just the opposite. Matthew lists some ancestors of Jesus that most would not be proud of as he reminds us that Jesus, the sinless Messiah, descended from sinners and came for sinners. Jesus is the kind of person who is not ashamed of sinners—he even puts them in his family tree.

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