Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Yet Without Sin

Bill Rice Ranch - First Light Devotionals 

Matthew 1:16 "And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ."
The first chapter of Matthew records the genealogy of the Lord Jesus and the events of His birth. It is not what these twenty-five verses are about; it is Who they are about. So who is "Jesus, who is called Christ"?
First, we are reminded that He is Jewish-born. The genealogies recorded in verses 1-17 give us the earthly lineage of the Lord Jesus. The last genealogy you find after this passage is in Luke 3. You may be able to trace your ancestors back several generations, but the Bible records the Lord's lineage back to Abraham! This connection to Abraham is significant because we see that God keeps His promises. God made promises to Abraham and to Jacob, and God kept those promises when the Lord Jesus was born.
Not only are we encouraged that God keeps His promises, we also see the Lord's very human lineage. His genealogy is documented in God's unchanging Word. How many of us even know our family genealogy past a few generations? God the Son had a human ancestry. You can take courage in that fact because, as the Book of Hebrews says, He was "in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin." (Hebrews 4:15) You see names of all kinds of people in the genealogy. In spite of their sinfulness and humanity, God was and is in control. God had come in human form and He was "yet without sin."
Second, we are reminded that the Lord Jesus is virgin-born. There is no way to miss the fact that the Lord Jesus did not have an earthly father-He was "conceived . . . of the Holy Ghost." Men today may dispute it; infidels may deny it; but God-in-flesh, Jesus Christ, was virgin-born. Notice how repeatedly and clearly God tells us this. Verse 18 says, "Before they [Mary and Joseph] came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost." In verse 20, the angel of the Lord tells Joseph, "For that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost." The Old Testament prophet had foretold, and is quoted in verse 23, that "a virgin shall be with child. . . ." And in verse 25, God says that Joseph "knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son. . . ." There is no denying it-the Son of God was virgin-born.
We can see these two facts-Jewish-born and virgin-born-in verse 16: "And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary" (He was Jewish-born) "of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ" (He was virgin-born). Although He had an earthly lineage, Jesus Christ had no earthly father; He was God Incarnate in human flesh, and He was "yet without sin." During this Christmas holiday, remember that we celebrate the virgin birth of the Perfect One who understands and is "yet without sin."

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