Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Beautiful things, the original manuscript

A bit of a followup, or prequel if you will, to my Beautiful Things post a while back spurred by the interesting sermon series chosen by our pastor leading up to Christmas: The Scandalous Background of the Savior.

Matthew 1:1-17 is the focus of the series and one of those name-laden passages I would normally breeze thorough without giving it a second thought.  This brief section of scripture captures the 42 generations leading up to the birth of Christ, from Abraham through David into the deportation to Babylon.  As we stepped through these verses and delved into the line of Jesus I realized that just like all of us, the Son of Man came from a background that was far from perfect.

Not to pick on the ladies, but they seemed to play a key role in God showing that he could bless the world despite the shortcomings of humanity. There was Tamar, who, acting as a prostitute tricked her father-in-law into fathering Perez who's family line led to Boaz, the redeemer of Ruth and the source of one of the most used verses at weddings.  What isn't widely known is that Boaz was birthed to Rahab the prostitute, the resident of Jericho who's salvation came from sheltering Israelite spies in Joshua 2 thus crediting her (a prostitute by trade) with 2 major contributions to Biblical history.  

Most also know that Jesus was a descendent of David, a great king and one of God's most faithful servants. What I had never really put together (likely due to breezing through historical accounts like this and only skimming the book of Numbers) was that Jesus was actually from the line of Soloman (the man with over 10000 wives and concubines) who was birthed to Bathsheba aka "the wife of Uriah" in 2 Samuel 11.  How's that for a twist?

All that to say that we cannot avoid our sin nature but thankfully that's not the end of the story.  If all of humanity can be redeemed through that much muck and mire so can each one of us.  As 2 Corinthians 5:17 says: "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come."

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