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Dealing with Joseph’s doubts

Dealing with Joseph’s doubts Dear Friends, Matthew in 1:1-17 has established that Jesus is God’s anointed King or Messiah who is descended from both David and Abraham. He now turns to the miraculous birth of Jesus through the power of the Holy Spirit. Matthew 1:18-25 points out that Joseph and Mary were pledged to be married but they had’t come together. There is a believability about this account because we also learn that Joseph couldn’t understand how Mary could be pregnant without having a relationship with another man. Joseph is described as a righteous man who decides to divorce Mary quietly because even though they weren’t married being engaged was binding and could only be broken by divorce. The Lord watches over his plan and intervenes by visiting Joseph in a dream and confirming that the child that Mary is carrying has been conceived by the Holy Spirit. It is interesting that Joseph is addressed as Son of David confirming again that this child is a royal descendent of David and so qualified to be the Messiah. Further Joseph is instructed to name the child Jesus which identifies his Messianic role to save people from their sins. This is the chief reason why Jesus came - to rescue us from our sins. Being born through the power of the Holy Spirit is also very important because it means that Jesus hasn’t inherited our sin and so He can be a perfect offering for sin because He is sinless. Matthew reminds us that this miraculous conception and birth of Jesus is the fulfilment of God’s plan and he quotes a prophecy from Isaiah 7:14 written about 700 BC. Matthew also is explaining that this Jesus who is Messiah, son of David is also Immanuel which is God with us. It is absolutely remarkable that God comes to earth and takes on human flesh. Marvel at this wonderful truth this Christmas and also be encouraged that the Gospel of Matthew has been written to convince us that this Jesus is the Christ so we can be confident in our faith and can grow. God’s Blessing Rev David O’Mara  

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Genealogy or the origin of Jesus Dear Friends, Matthew opens his Gospel with a genealogy. This is a word which is used in Genesis meaning an account of the origins. Matthew is wanting us to know where Jesus came from and who He is. These days many people are getting their DNA tested to see what ethnicities they have in their past as well as sign up for ancestry website searches. Our origins and background is fascinating and none more so that Jesus. He is clearly identified as the Messiah & as Son of David and Son of Abraham in 1:1. This identification is confirmed by His ancestry because He is from the tribe of Judah which Jacob prophesies in Genesis 50:10 that a ruler will come from this family origin who will rule and He will command the obedience of the nations. This Messiah is a world ruler. God promised that He would send His Messiah or anointed King who would come and help His people. Matthew wants us to know that Jesus is the one who was promised by God in the OT. The genealogy of Jesus is also interesting because unusually Matthew highlights 4 women which is amazing to include them as significant in the family tree. These women had unusual or even unsavoury aspects to their inclusion in the family tree. Matthew is reminding us that God at times does the unexpected and unorthodox and this helps set the scene for Mary who will give birth to the Messiah as an unmarried but engaged virgin through the power of the Holy Spirit. Expect the unexpected with God. God’s Blessing Rev David O’Mara 

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