Matthew 1:1-25

Matthew 1:1-25

The reason Matthew begins with a study of the Genealogy is to establish the credentials of the promised King of Israel. Genealogy in Greek has the same root as Genesis or beginning. In Israel genealogy was essential to establish one’s credentials.  Ezra 2:62 speaks of the returning exiles who ‘searched for their family records but could not and were excluded from the priesthood. Paul asserted his credentials to his establish his credibility to both Jews and Gentiles. The Jewish historian Josephus, who lived at the end of the first century, begins his autobiography by relating his genealogy. Genealogical records were kept in the Temple and could be verified. The genealogy recorded here is to establish the claim that Yeshua was qualified to be the promised Messiah. His genealogy links him to Abraham and King David and that He is the fulfillment of God’s promise to them. Abraham was told that in his seed all the families of the earth would be blessed (Gen. 22:18). God told David that his throne and kingdom would be established forever (Ps. 89:3-4).

Matthew 1:1-2 Unlike a man-made religion which glosses over the failings of its founders, The Bible portrays its hero’s as sinful men. The genealogy of the Messiah demonstrates the fallen nature of its heroes.  Abraham was not a perfect man, but one chosen by God. There are many failings of Abraham recorded in Scripture (Gen. 12:4 & 10‑20; 16:1‑6; Gen. 20:1‑7).  Despite these failures Abraham was described as God’s friend (Is. 41:8). What made Abraham a friend of God was his faith, Abraham believed God’s Word and it made him righteous (Gen. 15:6). It is faith in the promised seed that makes us righteous as well.

The Talmud (the Jewish commentary on the Torah) discuses the concept of two types of Messiahs in its writings.  One is called “Messiah Ben Joseph” an allusion to the favorite son of Jacob. He is so named because of the various prophecies that describe the Messiah experiencing trials similar to what Joseph experienced from his family. 

The traditional rabbinic view, till Renaissance times, was that Messiah ben Joseph is taught in the Law and the Prophets. The Talmud Bavli passage on Messiah ben Joseph, Sukkah 52a, says that Zechariah 12.10 refers to him. The eighth-century midrash, Pirqei de Rabbi Eliezer 22.a.ii, says that Moses spoke of him… So too Sa‘adya Gaon, in the tenth century, after relating the career of Messiah ben Joseph, which he learned from the sages, concludes, ‘I looked into Scripture and I found in it supports for each point in the account.’ Later rabbinic authorities took the same view, with the sole exception of Radak who confessed skepticism on the subject.[1]

He is so named because like Joseph he would be betrayed by his brothers sold for the price of a slave as described in Zech. 11:12-13 and would suffer on behalf of his brothers Isa. 52:13-Isa. 53. The other Messiah is called Messiah Ben David, since he will sit on the throne of David and bring Israel peace from her enemies and rule over the nations (2 Sam 7:12-16; Ps 89:3f; 132:11; Is 9:6f; 11:1;). 

“There is the twofold picture the Jewish prophets gave of the Messiah. For centuries past, during the formulation of the Talmud, the rabbis made serious studies of messianic prophecies and concluded that the prophets spoke of two different Messiahs. The Messiah who was to come, suffer, and die was termed Mashiach ben Yosef or Messiah, the Son of Joseph. The second Messiah who would then come following the first was termed Mashiach ben David or Messiah, the Son of David… That the Old Testament presents these two lines of messianic prophecy was something that all the early rabbis recognized. The Old Testament never clearly states that there will be two Messiahs. In fact, many of the paradoxical descriptions are found side by side in the same passages in which, it seems, that only one person is meant. Nevertheless, for the early rabbis, the Two Messiahs Theory seemed to be the best answer[2]

Isaac like Abraham had his failings, but he too was pleasing to the Lord.  Gen. 26 & Gen. 27 describe his shortfalls, but like Abraham, Isaac he demonstrated his faith by allowing his father to offer him to God as a sacrifice (Gen. 22). Jacob also had many shortfalls and yet was chosen and beloved by God. Jacob seemed to believe that the Lord helps those who help themselves; consider the plot that he joined with his mother to gain the birthright that was already promised to him (Gen 27).  Jacob becomes a transformed man when he finally comes to the end of his own resources as we see in Gen. 32.

Matthew 1:3-4 Judah and Tamar are in the genealogical line which again reveals the grace of God in overlooking their transgressions described in Genesis 38.  Intermarriage caused Judah and his sons to walk in the way of the Canaanites.  Tamar, a Canaanite and Judah’s daughter in law gave birth to a son from Judah. Yet she is the first of four significant women in the genealogy of David and the Messiah. For all of his sin, Judah found forgiveness in his later life in the eyes of his father Jacob and the Lord. Judah is the fourth born and yet receives the blessing of a first born because of Reuben’s sin with Bilhah, Rachel’s, servant.  Simeon and Levi the next in line were disqualified by Jacob for their deception in killing the sons of Hamor described in Gen. 34 and Gen. 49:10. 

Matthew 1:5 Rahab the Harlot is the second significant woman in the genealogical line. Rahab was essentially a prostitute yet became a child of promise because of her faith in the God of the Israel (Josh. 2:8‑11). She blessed Israel and received God’s blessing.   The third significant woman in the genealogical line is Ruth a Moabite, a woman of both faith and humility.  She recognized that the God of Israel was the one true God and left her family to walk with Him. She was responsible for turning Naomi’s bitterness to joy as described in the book named for her. Boaz became Naomi’s Kinsmen‑Redeemer a role described in Gen. 38:9; Deut. 25:5‑10; Ruth 4:1‑8. A Redeemer was person who would recover persons or things that had been lost or forfeited through various means.  A redemption price was generally needed for this recovery or restoration. A human intermediary, known in the Hebrew as the Goel acted to secure the redemption.  Yeshua is our Kinsmen‑Redeemer who came for us when we were lost in sin sold into bondage and we were redeemed with a costly price (Gal 3:13 4:5, Col 1:14).

The genealogical line demonstrates that God has worked and continues to work with people like us who are sinful and broken, Jews, Gentiles, men and women.  The genealogy chronicles the fathers and mothers of our faith who looked for the Messiah. Those who sinned were chastened and experienced the consequences of their sin yet found restoration and redemption by God’s grace.

V 6 David the King – The Davidic Covenant – King David was promised by God “When your days are over, and you rest with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring to succeed you, who will come from your own body, and I will establish his kingdom. He is the one who will build a house for my Name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever (2 Samuel 7:12‑13).  This is a clear reference not to King Solomon but to the Messiah.  Solomon’s Kingdom did not endure forever as we shall see. 

2 Samuel 7:11‑18 describes the Davidic Covenant an unconditional, perpetual, everlasting covenant.  It guaranteed 3 things to David and Israel: A House, a throne, and a Kingdom. There were 5 irrevocable provisions of this covenant given to Israel, and through Israel to the nations. 

  1. A Nation forever ‑ The Jewish people a nation in dispersion and in these last days being regathered to their homeland (Genesis 17:7‑8; Ezekiel 37-37). 

2. A Land Forever ‑ The nation was promised a homeland forever (Genesis 15:18). Over and over Israel was reminded that the Land belonged to the Lord. (Lev 25:23) ‘The land, moreover, shall not be sold permanently, for the land is Mine; for you are but aliens and sojourners with Me. It is from this tiny land that God will conclude His redemptive program for the world.  

3. A House Forever (2 Sam 7:16). House refers to the Davidic line which will continue forever.  The Davidic line continues today in the Son of David, Yeshua.  He will rule and reign over the nation of Israel as He now rules over the church. 

4. A Throne forever (Psa. 89:34‑36) Although Israel has passed through thousands of years of successive captivities and scatterings, this covenant has remained in force.  The Throne of David was confirmed afresh in Luke 1:32‑33. 

5. A Kingdom forever (2 Sam. 7:16) This kingdom will be established on earth as it is in heaven at his return.  It will be the kingdom restored to Israel just as the Jewish apostles asked in Acts 1:6. It will be on the very land promised to the Jewish people.  The covenants, which are the foundation of all prophecy, possess a validity which is irrevocable and unchangeable. They cannot be set aside either by human policies or politics, or historical changes because they constitute the purposes and plans of God. 

The punishment of David’s adultery with Bathsheba (the fourth woman in the genealogical line of the Messiah) was the death of their son (2 Sam 12:15). The Lord demonstrated His forgiveness of David’s sin with the birth of Solomon who was loved by the Lord (2 Sam 12:24‑25).  God forgave David his sin, but the consequences of his sins could not be avoided. David’s oldest son Amnon like his father was unable to control his lust and raped his half-sister, Tamar.  Absalom her brother avenged his sister by killing Amnon then usurping the throne from his father King David (2 Sam 13‑15). 

Matthew 1:7 King Solomon was blessed and greatly loved by God. However, His blessings on Solomon and the nation were conditioned by keeping God’s covenant commands (1 Kings 3:2‑14 & 1 Kings 9:1‑10). Solomon disobeyed by:

  1. Multiplying horses (Deut. 17:16; 1 Kings 10:26 & 1 Kings 4:26).
  • Taking many wives (Deut. 17:17 1 Kings 11:1) 
  • Accumulating great wealth (Dt. 17:17; 1 Kings 10:14‑25).  

The result was that his heart was led astray, and God brought judgment on Solomon and Israel (1 Kings 11:9‑13). God caused the Kingdom to be divided in 930 B.C. (1 Kings 11:26‑40).  Rehoboam, Solomon’s son heeded the counsel of his companions rather than the advice of his father’s counselors.  The division was from the Lord (1 Kings 11:34). The Ten Northern Tribes were known as Israel. The Southern Kingdom was known as Judah.  The first King of of Israel was Jeroboam, a general who served Solomon.  He feared that if he did not establish an alternate center for worship the Israelites would move to Judah where the Temple was  located (1 Kings 12:25‑33). He trusted in common sense and worldly reasoning rather than the Lord. He built a temple in Shechem and filled it with a golden calf and succeeding kings maintained that worship. The result was that there were no good kings in Israel.  

Many prophets were sent to Israel to call her back to God.  Elijah, Elisha, Hosea and others. Their disobedience led to their captivity and dispersal in 722 B.C.  Many from the Northern tribes moved to southern kingdom of Judah as a result of Jeroboam’s apostasy and then the Assyrian invasion. This is significant because there was a remnant from all the tribes of Israel and thus none are not lost.  For example, in Luke 2:36 Anna was from the Tribe of Asher one of the 10 Northern tribes that became Israel.  There were many good kings in Judah and some bad ones.  Idolatry that eventually came to Judah brought the same judgment that fell on Israel.  Judah was brought into captivity beginning in 606 B.C. and in 586 BC Jerusalem and the Temple was destroyed.

There are gaps in this genealogy. There are two likely reasons to explain this. First, the Greek word (gennao), which is translated begat in some translations, allows the writer to skip over one or more generations if they choose to and Verse 17 tells us why.  Matthew separated this genealogy of Yeshua into three periods of Jewish history: 1) Abraham, the father of the Jewish people 2) David, the great king of Israel, who’s descendent would be the Messiah; and 3) the Babylonian Exile.

Matthew 1:8 Abijah the son of Rehoboam succeeded him on the throne of Judah. He began his three years reign with an effort to bring back the ten tribes. His call to “Jeroboam and Israel,” before battle is noteworthy (2 Chron. 13). 500,000 of the army of Israel perished in the confrontation. Abijah trusted God and against overwhelming odds, the Lord fought gave him a great victory. 

Asa the son of Abijah introduced many reforms, such as putting away the sodomite male prostitutes, removing idols, breaking down their altars, and deposing his idolatrous “queen mother” (1 Ki 15:12 ff; 2 Ch 14:3). He too was one of the good kings of Judah.

Jehoshaphat, his son also continued the cleansing of Judah of idolatry (1 Kings 22; 2 Chr 22). In his third year he sent out priests and Levites over the land to instruct God’s people in the law (2 Chr 17:7). God blessed him and the land with peace and prosperity. Sadly he entered into an alliance with Ahab, king of Israel and it brought God’s judgment (1 Kings 22:13). The prophet Jehu (2 Chr 19:1) rebuked him and he repented. But later he entered a trade and shipping agreement with Ahaziah who succeeded Ahab and was again judged by the Lord destroying his fleet (2 Chron. 20:35 -37; 1 Kings 22:48-49). Then with the next king of Israel he went to war against the Moabites. When the Moabite king offered his own son as a sacrifice to molech he was horrified and withdrew returning home from war.

Matthew 1:9 Joram son of Jehoshaphat walked in the ways of Ahab. This should serve as a reminder that Jehoshaphat’s disobedience by aligning with Ahab influenced his son. His marriage to Ahab and Jezebel’s daughter led him to do evil (2 Ki. 8:18-19).

Uzziah’s reign of fifty-two years was second only to Jehoshaphat he brought Israel back into blessing and prosperity. In the early part of his reign, under the influence of Zechariah, he was faithful, and “did that which was right in the sight of the Lord” (2 Kings 15:3; 2 Chron. 26:4-5); but toward the end of his long life “his heart was lifted,” and he attempted to assume the role of the priests (2 Chron. 26:16) by entering the holy place to offer incense on the altar. Uzziah was struck with leprosy while offering the incense (2 Chron. 26:17-21). He fled from the temple and forced to reside in a separate house until his death (2 Kings 15).

Jotham, the son of Uzziah at age 25 oversaw the kingdom in his father’s stead because of his leprosy (2 Chron. 26). When his father died, he became king and reigned for sixteen years (B.C. 759-743). Scripture defined him as a good king and God blessed his reign. The prophets Isaiah, Hosea, and Micah counseled him in his rule. His death was greatly mourned by the people (2Kings 15; 2 Chron. 27).

Ahaz, the son of Jotham lived a life of evil and idolatry (2 Kings 16; Isa. 7-9; 2 Chron. 28). He ignored the calls to repentance by Isaiah, Hosea, and Micah. Rather than look to God He sought for help from the kings of Assyria, Damascus, and Israel, when threatened. This led to Judah becoming servants to the Assyrians. He died at the age of 35, after reigning sixteen years (B.C. 740-724), and was succeeded by Hezekiah. 

Matthew 1:10 Hezekiah was one of Israel’s greatest kings who trusted and obeyed God. His faith moved God to rout the Assyrians when they were under siege. Jerusalem was surrounded by their vast army with no way of escape. Isaiah encouraged and counseled him to look to the Lord (2 Kings 18-19). Sadly, his son was the worst king who reigned over Judah. “He did more evil than the nations the Lord destroyed when Israel came into the land”. However, at the end of his life, Manasseh repented of his sins (2 Chronicles 33). Sadly, his son Amon was like his father and “did evil in the eyes of the Lord”. Amon offered sacrifices to the idols Manasseh had made. But unlike his father, he did not repent (2 Chron. 33:22–23). His son Josiah, however had a heart for God.  He is described as one who turned to the Lord with all his heart, soul, and strength, in accordance with all the Law of Moses (2 Kings 23:25).

Matthew 1:11 Jeconiah was the king when the Babylonians brought God’s judgment on the nation. The evil of Jeconiah (2 Kings 24:8–9) was so great that his line was cursed (Jer. 22:30). Therefore, a natural, biological son could not inherit the throne of David. How then could a son of David sit on his throne if the line was cursed? This is one of reasons why Joseph was not the real but adoptive father of Jesus. Both Joseph and Miriam were descended from King David.  Joseph was descended from the kingly line that was cursed but not Miriam’s which is chronicled in Luke 3.

Ezekiel, Jeremiah, and others prophesied of God’s judgment in the Exile. The number of years of their captivity was decreed in Jer. 25:11; 2 Chronicles 36:21; Jeremiah 29:10, and Daniel 9:2. When Daniel was in exile in Babylon, the Lord revealed to him the time when the Messiah would come (Daniel 9:24‑27)[3].  

The Babylonian captivity was a time of pruning for Israel.  It was in Babylon and later Persia, that the Jewish people were cured of worshiping idols.  The return to Judea is chronicled in the Books of Ezra & Nehemiah.  In Ezra we see the rebuilding of the Temple under the leadership of Ezra and Zerubbabel. The glory of this Temple paled in comparison to the first Temple (Ezra 3:8‑13, 6:13‑15, Hag. 2:1‑9). Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi were the prophets who encouraged the people during this time of sad return.  The land was devastated with the people under foreign domination, and there appeared to be little manifestation of God working among them.  These prophets along with Zerubbabel, Ezra, and Nehemiah exhorted God’s people to be faithful and holy despite their circumstances.

Matthew 1:12 Jeconiah is listed as the father of Shealtiel. Matthew departs from the genealogy of 1 Chron 3:19 which lists Pedaiah as Zerubbabel’s father. Why are there differences in these genealogies? Scholars have various opinions, but probably the most likely was “levirate” marriage. Which is the marriage of a widow to the brother of deceased husband. This was a provision in God’s Law to carry on the deceased Israelite’s name and land. If a widow married someone outside the family, her first husband’s line would end. Shealtiel may have died childless, and his brother Pedaiah may have married his widow. Pedaiah then would thus be deemed Zerubbabel’s father (as noted in 1 Chron. 3:19). Zerubbabel’s birth, according to the law of levirate marriage, carried on Shealtiel’s name. This was discussed in v 5 with Boaz’s marriage to Ruth.  

When Judah returned from captivity in Babylon, Zerubbabel was appointed governor (Haggai 1:1) and oversaw the rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem (Ezra 5:2). God blessed Zerubbabel, reaffirming the promise of the Messiah through David’s line, through the prophet Haggai (Haggai 2:23).

Matthew 1:13-15 Nothing is known from Scripture about any of these men because they lived during the time between the end of the Older Covenant writings and the New.  Matthew likely got their names from Jewish genealogical records that were kept in the Temple.

Matthew 1:16 Luke 3:23 records that, Joseph the adoptive father of Yeshua was the son of Heli. The royal line continued through Joseph, who, though not the actual father of Jesus, was the husband of Miriam (Mary).Yeshua’s birth will be clarified in 1:18–25. Matthew completed his genealogy showing, that Jesus was a descendant of David, and so fulfilling God’s promises. 

Matthew 1:17 As we discussed earlier Matthew breaks Israel’s history into three sets of fourteen generations. Genealogies often compress history, so not every generation is listed. Some suggest that Matthew used the “perfect number” (seven) and made three groups of twice seven. Seven also points to the day God rested in creation. Others suggest that the three groups represent three significant points in Jewish history: the generations leading to King David, the loss of David’s throne to the Babylonian exile, and the restoration of the throne and promises leading to the birth of the Messiah. One other suggestion is that David’s name in Hebrew numerical values is fourteen. The numeric values come from Hebrew consonants in David’s name (DVD = 4+6+4=14).

Matthew 1:18 – The Virgin Birth is one of the most difficult concepts for many in accepting the truth of Scripture, especially for Jewish people. There are a number of reasons for a virgin birth. The first is to fulfill Prophecy. In Is. 7:14 the Hebrew word for virgin is “Almah”. The context for this passage in Isaiah dates back to 735 BC when Assyria threatened the alliance of Syria and the northern kingdom of Israel. They wanted to force the Southern kingdom of Judah to align with them against Assyria. Syria and Israel attacked Judah and began a siege against Jerusalem.  Isaiah comes before Judah’s king Ahaz and calls him to trust in the Lord (Is. 7:3‑9).  Ahaz has trouble believing the message and promise of God to protect him and the nation.  So, Isaiah tells to him to ask the Lord for a sign for assurance.  Ahaz does not want to ask and so the Lord Himself gives Isaiah a sign in 7:14. 

The Hebrew word for virgin is almah and occurs 7 times in the OT. Gen. 24:43, Ex. 2:8, Prov. 30:19, Song 1:3, 6:8, Ps. 68:25, Is. 7:14.  Some claim that the word refers generally to a “young woman,” not a virgin.  The presumption in common Jewish law was that every Almah is a virgin and virtuous until she is proven not to be. Therefore, we have the right to assume that Rebecca who is described as an “almah” in Gen. 24:43 and the Alma of Is. 7:14 were virgins and all other “Alamot”, were virgins until it was proven otherwise.[4]  

There are two virgins in mind in this passage there was a fulfillment in Isaiah’s day and there is an application to the fulfillment in Matthew 1. Is. 8:1‑4 describes a marriage ceremony and its consummation with the birth of a son. In Is. 7:14 there is a definite article before Almah “The”, thus singling out a specific virgin, who would give birth to a son who would be a sign 7:15‑16. This was likely a second wife for the widowed Isaiah. Theologically this is known as “The law of double reference.”[5] The idea of a dual fulfillment is not without precedent.  Consider the “Abomination of Desolation” in Dan. 9:27, which refers first to Antiochus, and then later in Matt. 24:15 we also see this in Hosea 11:1 & Matt. 2:15 which speaks of both Israel and Yeshua as God’s son.

Theological reasons for the virgin birth: 

The Redeemer had to be a man with a sinless nature. The difficulty seems to be that one precludes the other.  If you are a man, you sin. It is impossible to be sinless.  But if a man was born of woman (thus making him a man), and his father was God (thus making him sinless), you would have the perfect nature.  

The right to the throne of David was promised to a descendant of David. However, Satan corrupted the royal line that God pronounced a curse on it and cut those rights to the throne (Jeremiah 22:30).  Joseph, the husband of Mary, was of that line and the curse was on his natural born sons.  But Mary was also of the line of David through David’s son, Nathan, and that line wasn’t cursed. So, by the virgin birth, the curse was by‑passed while the bloodline of David was preserved.  By the marriage of Joseph to Mary, the legal rights were also maintained. 

The rabbis applied Jeremiah 31:22 to the Messiah in the Talmud Bereshit Rabba. That commentary teaches that God heals with that with which He wounds. He punished Israel and the nations through a virgin (Eve), so He would also heal with a virgin referring to Genesis 3:15.

For those who doubt such a miraculous event consider how the Jewish people began?  God caused Abraham, at 99, and Sarah, at 89, to conceive a son, Isaac.  Adam was made from the dust of the earth.  Eve was fashioned from Adam’s rib.  The question is not “Is a virgin birth possible?”  The question is “Is God powerful enough to do miracles?”

Matt. 1:18-19 In Jewish custom betrothal was equal to Marriage. This is why Joseph considered divorce when he learned that Mary was with child but not by him.  Joseph’s righteousness meant he was a true believer. The Hebrew word is tsadik “a righteous one”, as in Melchizedek (king of righteousness). Righteousness comes by faith and obedience to God’s commands. Infidelity in marriage and betrothal was punishable by death (Deut. 22:23).  Torah gives the husband the power of divorce, (Deut. 24:1). It was customary to specify the causes, and witnesses would also be present to testify to the divorce. But Joseph determined to put her away without specifying the cause. This must have been a great trial to Joseph and Mary. Joseph was not yet aware of her innocence. We may learn from this to put our trust in God when falsely accused as Mary did. He will defend the innocent.  God had arranged her marriage to the right man and at the right time Joseph was told the truth and took his faithful wife to himself trusting God to protect them both. This too is a reminder that God will guard our reputation. We may experience slander and at times circumstances may be against us; but in due time God will vindicate our character and save us (Ps. 37:5-6).

Matthew 1:20 – Joseph thought on these things and did not act hastily. He faced a situation deeply affecting his happiness, and character.  The angel of the Lord – the word “angel” literally means a messenger. They are holy beings who have not fallen into sin: who live in heaven (1 Tim. 5:21; Jude 1:6); and are sent to minister to the heirs of salvation (Heb. 1:13-14; Dan. 9:21). Angels appear in various ways making known the will of God, by dreams, visions, assuming at times a human appearance.  In this case the appearance is in a dream making known the will of God.  We don’t really know how they could be certain that these dreams were from God.  We need to be very careful to assume that God is communicating to us in dreams.  Dreams in Scripture were confirmed by the God’s word. The angel addresses him as a Son of Davidwhich is the context for the announcement that his wife was the mother of the Promised Messiah. Joseph is told not to be afraid or hesitate to marry her because of her unusual pregnancy. The angel begins the process of calming his fear of shame and disgrace in marrying her. He tells Joseph that her conception is from the Spirit of God.  This was God’s way of preparing a body that would not be tainted with Adam’s sin (Gen 3:15; Heb. 10:5).

Matthew 1:21 – His name will be Yeshua which means literally “salvation” from the Hebrew root יָשַׁע yasha to save, the same root as Joshua. He will bring salvation through His death paying the ransom or bride price. The “kinsman-redeemer” was a close relative expected to avenge or pay back a wrong done or to buy back property that had been sold out of the family (see v 5 above).  The first coming purchased His bride (betrothal) and at His second coming He will wed His wife which at the marriage supper of the Lamb. Israel will have a leading role on earth among the nations (Isa. 2:3).  He came to unite two peoples, Jew and Gentile into one.  He is our kinsman delivering us from sin and death that we might be free to serve and love God only.  We do not become part of His Bride or His children until we are freed from the power and dominion of sin.  Just professing to be His people is not enough as was apparent in His dealings with Israel.  If we say we are saved and yet live as though we are not, we deceive ourselves 1 John 3:7-8.

Matthew 1:22-25 – We considered the prophecy of Isa. 7:14 when we explained the reasons for the virgin birth in v. 18.  Immanuel means “God with us” and indicates that the immediate fulfillment of this sign would demonstrate that God would protect His people. The name Immanuel also implies Jesus’ deity. Mary’s virgin-born Son would be God Himself living among His people. The more majestic and greater fulfillment is found in this verse when Matthew declares that this birth refers to Mary’s child Yeshua and his miraculous virgin conception and birth.

Matthew 1:24-25 Joseph took Mary as his wife. Betrothal in Jewish custom was equivalent to marriage as we explained in Matthew 1:18-19. The name “Jesus” specifies what He will do (“God saves”). The messianic title “Immanuel” specifies who he is (“God with us”). Matthew concludes his writing with the same theme: “I am with you always” (28:20).

[1] Mitchell, David. Messiah ben Joseph (p. 3). Campbell Publications. Kindle Edition.

[2] Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum, The Messianic Bible Study Collection, vol. 11 (Tustin, CA: Ariel Ministries, 1983), 3–4.


[4] CF. Edward J. Young “The Book of Isaiah” Vol. 1

[5] “Things to Come” D. Pentecost pp. 46‑47.

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