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The Different Genealogies of Jesus Christ in Matthew and Luke

Why is the genealogy of Jesus Christ very different in Matthew 1 and Luke 3, particularly after David? This blog will answer this question which is common among Bible believers and is also a common objection to the inerrancy of the scriptures by unbelievers.

The genealogy of Jesus Christ in Mat 1:1-16 is His lineage through His step-father Joseph, and the genealogy in Luk 3:23-38 is His lineage through His mother Mary. This can be deduced by the use of the word "begat" in Matthew and the words "which was the son of" in Luke. Jacob begat Joseph (Mat 1:16), which means that Jacob was Joseph's biological father. Joseph was the son of Heli (Luk 3:23), which means that Heli was his father in law. This is not a stretch at all. David was called Saul's son, even though he was his son in law (1Sa 24:11,16 c/w 1Sa 18:26-27) -- the same was the case with Joseph and Heli, Mary's father.

Jesus was the heir to David's throne through his step-father Joseph who was in the lineage of David's son Solomon and his royal seed (Mat 1:6). Jesus was a blood descendant of David through Mary who was in the lineage of David through his son Nathan (Luk 3:31).

These two different genealogies also answer another conundrum in the scriptures. In Jeremiah 22:28-30, Coniah was cursed to not have any of his seed sit on the throne of David.

Jer 22:28-30 - Is this man Coniah a despised broken idol? is he a vessel wherein is no pleasure? wherefore are they cast out, he and his seed, and are cast into a land which they know not? 29 O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of the LORD. 30 Thus saith the LORD, Write ye this man childless, a man that shall not prosper in his days: for no man of his seed shall prosper, sitting upon the throne of David, and ruling any more in Judah.

Coniah was another name for Jeconiah (Jer 22:24 c/w 1Ch 3:16-17). How could Christ eventually sit on David's throne as He was prophesied to do (2Sa 7:12-16 c/w Act 2:29-31) if God had decreed that none of Jeconiah's descendants would sit on David's throne? The two genealogies of Christ answer this mystery. Jesus was a blood descendent of David through Mary (Luk 3:31), and He was a legal descendant of the royal line of David through Solomon (Mat 1:6), Jeconiah (Mat 1:11-12), and his step-father Joseph (Mat 1:16). Since Jesus Christ was not a blood descendent of Jeconiah, the prophecy that Jeconiah would not have any of his seed to sit on the throne of David was fulfilled. Since Jesus Christ was a blood descendant of David through His mother Mary, and He legally had the right to inherit David's throne through his step-father Joseph, the prophecy of the Davidic covenant was fulfilled.

Hopefully this little blog helps to strengthen the faith of Christians and shut the mouths of unbelievers (Tit 1:10-11).


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