This sermon is part of our Inescapable series. Inescapable is a 12 part series that studies the Gospel of Matthew and its messages. You can watch all 12 here.
This morning we are going to be in Matthew 1. We are kicking off a new devotional. You can turn to page 09. We provide these devotionals so you can see where we are going as a church in Austin, so you can follow along on Sunday mornings and so you can study God’s Word throughout the week.
Tomorrow morning you can turn to page 12 and start studying our passage for next Sunday along with me and I promise you, your time on Sunday morning will be better.
In addition, we are starting a new series we titled INESCAPABLE because this year we are asking the Lord to embolden our faith in Him and one way for that to happen is to look at the life of Jesus, the power of Jesus is at the global level.
There are people living in Nigeria today and Jesus rule and authority is over the people of Nigeria. There are CEO’s making decisions today and Jesus rule and authority is over every CEO in the world. Let me let that sink in for a little bit.
There are even middle schoolers scheming something that could only start in the mind of a middle schooler and Jesus’ rule and authority is taking place at all times, in all places with all people. Let’s look at verse 1, Matthew 1:
Matthew 1:1, “1 The record of the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah, the son of David, the son of Abraham:”
The gospel of Matthew is written at a time in history under the Roman Empire. The Roman Empire would have fueled its economy through taxation so that governmental officials would hire people from the nation they had just conquered to collect those taxes, and Matthew, the author of our passage this morning, is one of those tax collectors.
Which means Matthew, as a Jewish man, was betraying His people to collect taxes for the very people who were oppressing them. Does that make sense?
These tax collectors were despised. They were oppressors. They were seen as robbers of their own people, therefore, right at the beginning the title “Gospel of Matthew” would have jumped off the page.
What could a person like Matthew possibly teach us about the holiness of God? What good news would a tax collector have to offer? Who is this Jesus who would work in the life of a tax collector? You need to hear that this morning.
The name of Jesus is INESCAPABLE to all people. There’s no job profession the rule of Jesus can’t accomplish His purpose. There’s no background the authority of Jesus can’t move in, so that right out of the gate, the name of the author alone would get your attention.
In addition, as we begin verse 1 we see the phrase “record of the genealogy.” Genealogy is our family history. Genealogy doesn’t carry as much weight today because the majority of people in the United States come from a variety of different backgrounds; Korean, Irish, Russian, Greek, Chinese, Swedish all mixed as one.
My dad was born in Oklahoma. His dad was born in Oklahoma. And his dad was married to a Cherokee woman named Chu Tah Ki Cum Mah so that today and my children, blonde hair and red hair are registered members of the Cherokee Nation. How’s that possible? It’s because of their genealogy!
In verse 1 Matthew begins with genealogy of Jesus because in the first century genealogy would have been like a resume. A person’s genealogy would have told you their social standing in the community, is this an important person, should we listen to this person, should follow this person; look at their genealogy.
In verse 1 we see Jesus’ genealogy starts off with three titles; Jesus the Messiah, Son of David and Son of Abraham. Underline those in your devotional.
Matthew 1:1, “1 The record of the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah, the son of David, the son of Abraham:”
We’re going to get to those three titles in a minute but right out of the gate I want you to see these three titles lay the foundation of a genealogy that take us all the way back to Genesis. Do you see it? The son of David, the king of Israel (1 and 2 Samuel – OT) and the son of Abraham (Genesis – OT).
It’s as though Matthew is acknowledging in his opening words there is a brokenness in our world but it wasn’t always this way. Remember Matthew is writing to a people who are living under the oppression of Rome. There is injustice, unexplainable hurt, people being trampled on and tossed out, but in verse 1 it’s as if Matthew is saying, “There are layers of darkness and despair but it wasn’t always this way and it won’t always be this way, because one day the Chosen one will come with rule and authority over all of creation. Does that make sense?
Let’s start with the word “Messiah” in verse 1 the word ‘Messiah” means anointed. Write that in your devotional. The word “anointed” means hand selected by God, which practically means Jesus didn’t think to Himself one day, “I think I am going to tell everyone I am the Savior of the world.” It’s not like some people got together and said, “Let’s go with this Jesus guy, Jesus would be a great Savior.”
Jesus is the anointed. Jesus is the One who has been chosen all along. Does that make sense? Jesus is eternal God. Jesus is involved in creation (Colossians 1). Genesis 1 says, “We.” Jesus is working in the lives of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph, so that throughout the Old Testament there are ups and downs of life, right?
There are seasons of darkness and moments of despair. There are days when a person is overcome with doubts but when you see the title “Jesus the Messiah” it’s like the Father, Son and Spirit are whispering into the cosmos, “There might be days of darkness but the chosen One is coming.”
Surely, you’ve heard about Deon Sanders shaking up things at Jackson State University and now Colorado University? Deon Sanders arrived at Colorado University with his tag phrase “We com’in.” Did you see this? Coach said he was bringing his bags and they’re Louis.
Deon Sanders spent the spring getting his players ready. Then he spent the summer training the team to get them ready and then right before their first game before TCU Coach Sanders gathered his team to say, “We ain’t comin no more.” For six months Coach Sanders had the mantra “We com’in.” Then Deon Sanders pauses and says, “Today, we here.” Players erupted! It’s a powerful moment!
That’s a little bit of what Matthew is capturing in verse 1. Sin distorts all that God created to be good, “We com’in.” Israel taken into captivity, “We com’in.”
David sins with Bathsheba, Israel falling apart, taken into exile, conquered by Rome, “We com’in” so that verse 1 is clarifying, “The chosen One, the promised One, the anointed One is here.” Jesus is here and He is for all times, all places and all people.
Next you see the title “Son of Abraham.” Do you know the story of Abraham? What a gift to yourself to read the first 20 chapters of Genesis this week. Read three chapters a day this week to take in the life of Abraham. Look at verses 2-6:
Matthew 1:2-6, “2 Abraham fathered Isaac, Isaac fathered Jacob, and Jacob fathered Judah and his brothers. 3 Judah fathered Perez and Zerah by Tamar, Perez fathered Hezron, and Hezron fathered Ram. 4 Ram fathered Amminadab, Amminadab fathered Nahshon, and Nahshon fathered Salmon. 5 Salmon fathered Boaz by Rahab, Boaz fathered Obed by Ruth, and Obed fathered Jesse. 6 Jesse fathered David the king.”
In the life of Abraham, you need to know Abraham is a nobody. The Lord says to Abraham, “I am going to make you a great nation.” This is the beginning of Israel.
In Genesis 12 the Lord says to Abraham, “Through your seed, offspring I will bless the nations.” That word “nations” in the original language is ethnicities of the world. That promise is repeated in Genesis 15, Genesis 17 and Genesis 22. It’s a big deal.
It is a promise that through the seed of Abraham someone is going to come who will have such influence on the world that all people, all backgrounds, all ethnicities, all educations, all economics will be blessed by Him. That’s Jesus! We don’t see that in verse 1 but the people of Matthew’s day would have known exactly what Matthew was saying.
In addition, let’s just draw out a few observations in our passage. Notice there are men and women that are mentioned in the genealogy of Jesus; Tamar, Rahab, and Ruth. There will be 5 women mentioned in total so that again, right out of the gate we see Jesus rule and authority is over all people; men and women.
Tik-Tok videos can accuse the bible of being anti-female but you can just laugh when you see those videos, because it couldn’t be anything further from the truth. The purpose of a genealogy is to give validity and throughout human history the role of a female has had very little value but in the genealogy of Jesus we see men and women.
In addition, you need to see the layers of ethnicity in these verses. It’s possible you might think conversations around ethnicity just became important in 2023? It’s possible you might think only the United States struggles to help different ethnic groups get along?
But Matthew is a Jewish man, working as a tax collector, as an outcast in his community and not only records women in the genealogy of Jesus but also records Moabites and Canaanites who are historical ethnic enemies of Israel.
Rahab was known as a Canaanite prostitute (Joshua 2.) Ruth is a Moabite who has her world turned upside down in the book of Ruth and yet both of these women play a vital role in the genealogy of Jesus.
The culture of their day would have said these women were a waste of time, little value, overlooked but the God of Scripture says, “No, these women are going to play a vital role” so that the rule and authority of Jesus is over all times, all places and all people.
Listen to me, I understand our world is going through some transition. Our country is going through some transition. Our church in north Austin is going through some transition, so that it would be easy to feel like our feet are planted firmly in the air. Do you feel like that sometimes?
But listen to me, there’s no corner Jesus’ rule doesn’t touch. I understand we have questions that aren’t being answered but there’s no mountain peak, no speck on a telescope into the cosmos where Jesus’ authority isn’t declared, so that as we enter into the challenges of life we can be sure there will be seasons of despair, there will be seasons of darkness, there will be seasons of tears, there will be moments where we are crying out to the Lord, “What’s going on?” But none of those circumstances will thwart His purposes. Look at verses 6-11:
Matthew 1:6-11, “6 Jesse fathered David the king David fathered Solomon by her who had been the wife of Uriah. 7 Solomon fathered Rehoboam, Rehoboam fathered Abijah, and Abijah fathered Asa. 8 Asa fathered Jehoshaphat, Jehoshaphat fathered Joram, and Joram fathered Uzziah. 9 Uzziah fathered Jotham, Jotham fathered Ahaz, and Ahaz fathered Hezekiah. 10 Hezekiah fathered Manasseh, Manasseh fathered Amon, and Amon fathered Josiah. 11 Josiah fathered Jeconiah and his brothers, at the time of the deportation to Babylon.”
Do you know the story of King David? What a gift to yourself to read 1 and 2 Samuel. Read 2 chapters a day for a month to take in the life of David as a reminder for how the rule and authority of Jesus is inescapable.
It’s possible when we read the title “Son of David” in verse 1 that it doesn’t carry much weight. It’s possible you might have been like, “I am the son of Tom. Who cares?” But the title “Son of David” is a reminder that in 1 Samuel 7, a promise is given “That one day One will come who will rule on the throne of David for eternity.”
It’s not like some people got together and said, “This Jesus guy would make a great king.” It’s not like Fred could tell everyone, “I am the captain now, listen to me.” No, the one who fulfills the promise of 1 Samuel 7 has to be from the family line of David. Does that make sense?
So that the opening verses Matthew is referencing two amazing promises; Abraham will bring forth a seed who will bless the nations (Genesis 12) and David will bring forth an offspring that will rule for eternity (1 Samuel 7).
That’s verse 1 and then verses 2-11 are validating those claims by saying look at this person, and this person and this person. Jesus’ rule and authority is unstoppable.
For example, notice the mention of Solomon in verse 6, “by her who had been the wife of Uriah.” This is talking about Bathsheba and at first glance it could look like a slight on Bathsheba but this is a slam on David, because king David is the one we would all want on our genealogy but Matthew is forcing the reader to remember the greatest shame of David.
David was the greatest king in the history of Israel, loved by everyone and yet David has Uriah killed so that he could forcefully take Bathsheba as his wife and the whole event is a dark spot on the life of David but in verse 6 it’s like Matthew is sounding out the greatest news to all of humanity, “Jesus has come for all people, all places and all times.”
Rahab, a sexual prostitute is in need of a Savior. Matthew, a tax collector, is in need of a Savior. And David, the greatest king in all of Israel, is in need of a Savior.
Listen to me, that’s good news for every person this morning? That’s good news in Vietnam. That’s good news in the 1200’s. That’s good news for those who are rich and those who are poor. It’s because Jesus’ rule and authority is over all places, all people and all times.
Do we really think the Lord can work through the lives of all these men and women and is somehow not sure what to do with the United States? Do we really think that parenting challenge with our children is going to cause Him to collapse? Take heart in the Lord. Turn your eyes to the Lord. Trust in Jesus.
This is why we are memorizing key Scriptures this year on God’s promises. If you haven’t made the commitment to take this step, do so now. That’s why we are wanting to increase our prayers, so that we increase our trust in the Lord. That’s why we are committing to these groups. Dark days are going to come but we want to bring in layers of support to help us lock our eyes on Jesus and trust Him. Look at verses 12-16:
Matthew 1:12-16, “12 After the deportation to Babylon: Jeconiah fathered Shealtiel, and Shealtiel fathered Zerubbabel. 13 Zerubbabel fathered Abihud, Abihud fathered Eliakim, and Eliakim fathered Azor. 14 Azor fathered Zadok, Zadok fathered Achim, and Achim fathered Eliud. 15 Eliud fathered Eleazar, Eleazar fathered Matthan, and Matthan fathered Jacob. 16 Jacob fathered Joseph the husband of Mary, by whom Jesus was born, who is called the Messiah.”
Again, in verse 12 we see the reference to Israel being deported into exile. You know the history of Israel, right?
Spiritual leaders of Israel fall away from the Lord. Prophets come to warn Israel over and over and Israel doesn’t listen. Eventually Israel is split into two kingdoms, then conquered by Assyria, Babylon, Persia, Rome, so that surely all hope was lost. Surely the Lord had abandoned Israel. Surely the Lord would fail on His promises.
But verse 16, WE HERE, in verse 16 we see the promise isn’t over because Jacob fathers Joseph, Joseph a descendent of David, fulfillment of 1 Samuel 7, so that Joseph is listed as the husband of Mary. Do you see that in verse 16?
This might be information overload but the Bible never calls Joseph the father of Jesus. Jesus was Joseph’s child legally because if you were adopted into a family, you were the legal child with all the rights and privileges but Jesus is born of Mary, who is also of the line of David (Luke 2), so that Jesus’ rule and authority, this is important, isn’t just declared to be over all people, all places and all times but Jesus rule and authority verifiable.
If you are wise this morning you will bow and turn to Jesus. If you want justice like our culture proclaims, you would bow and turn to Jesus. If you want peace, if you want the problems of inequality to be resolved, if you want darkness and despair to be removed then lift your eyes to Jesus and trust in Him.
The prophet Mohamad is only a person of authority to people in Islam. The King of England is only an authority to the people in the United Kingdom. Our titles and degrees are only impressive to people who will listen but Jesus’ rule and authority is to all people, all places and all times.
Just as a side note; the Roman Catholic church teaches that Mary was sinless but the bible teaches Mary is just like Rahab, Matthew, and David; another sinner in need of a Savior.
Mary plays an important role in the life of Jesus. What a gift to be the earthly mother of Jesus! But she is still a woman in need of a Savior. Look at verse 17:
Matthew 1:17, “17 So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; from David to the deportation to Babylon, fourteen generations; and from the deportation to Babylon to the Messiah, fourteen generations.”
The significance of the 14 generations being repeated 3 times is a reminder to the ups and downs of life. A kingdom is coming, a kingdom is established, a kingdom is lost, so that throughout history we see a period of glory, a period of despair and a period of silence, which is a similar pattern to a person’s life, right?
This morning we are going to celebrate communion as a bible church in north Austin. I want to invite the worship team to the front. Let’s lower the lights. It’s possible that you might be in a place in life where everything is coming together. It’s possible that you might be in a place of despair. It’s possible that you might be in a season of silence. This morning God’s Word is reminding us that the God of Scripture is always working in the story. It doesn’t matter where you come from.
The prostitute and the king are right next to each other. He’s working. The tax collector and the mother of Jesus are right next to each other. He’s working. One day, Jesus is going to show up in all His glory and all of creation will cry out, “He’s here.” Won’t you trust in Jesus today?
Won’t you come to the table and celebrate with us today? The bread is a symbol of Jesus’ body that was broken at the cross. The juice is a reminder of Jesus’ blood that has been poured out on our behalf, so that we might have life in Him.
Every person here this morning, every person who reads Matthew 1 has the same opportunity to meet Jesus, have their life transformed, reconciled to God, because the name of Jesus will never perish.
It doesn’t matter what you’ve done. It doesn’t matter who you are. It just matters that we turn to Jesus and trust in Him. We will have people at the back to pray for you, please take advantage of the opportunity we have this morning.
North Village Church
This sermon is brought to you by North Village Church, a non-denominational church in Austin. established in 2009 and built around Jesus and Bible teaching.
Are you looking for a church in Austin? At North Village Church we put Jesus at the center of our church family. We worship together every Sunday at 10:30am, encourage Christ centered fellowship through groups, and host special events such as Bible studies and Theological Training, to ensure that we are rooted in in God’s Word. We also serve our local community in association with several Austin based organizations.
North Village Church is made up of professionals, married couples, singles, and families who are wanting to experience the life-transforming power of Jesus. If you are a family with children or teens, we can support you with either or both our Kids Ministry and Youth Ministry.
You are welcome to contact us if you would like more information.
Unable to attend this Christian Church in Austin? Don’t worry, because, through God’s provision, we have created NVC online, an Online Church streaming a worship service every Sunday from 10:30am Central Time. You can also watch our short, powerful sermons on demand and follow us on Instagram for daily Christ centered content.