Who is Called Christ 

Key Bible Passage:

…and Jacob the father of Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom Jesus was born, who is called Christ. (Matthew 1:16)


Some of us come from a troubled family background. Even if we come from a healthy home, we’re all familiar with unsavory, awkward, or downright embarrassing relatives. Many join the military as a means of escaping family drama or to straighten up. One now-successful E8 tells of standing at age 17 before a judge for repeated DUIs and being given the option of jail or military service. Times have changed!

Jesus’s lineage boasts some interesting characters, reminding us God’s grace is based on Christ’s merit, not ours.

The lineage of the Messiah had been foretold, so Matthew opened his story of Jesus’s life with a full ancestry list, from Abraham to his mother Mary. This genealogy is an index to some of the greatest stories in the Old Testament–stories of God’s grace given to messed-up, broken, sinful people. Consider these examples from Jesus’s genealogy:

  1. David was a king of Israel and God promised that one of David’s descendants would be the Messiah. Yet for all his professional success, David failed as a husband and father. His son Solomon was born from an affair with Bathsheba, the wife of David’s faithful soldier Uriah. David then arranged Uriah’s murder on the front line so he could take Bathsheba as his own wife! Matthew’s genealogy never lets King David off the hook for that sin–Bathsheba is named as “the wife of Uriah,” rather than as David’s wife (2 Samuel 11).
  2. Rahab was a former prostitute from another nation. She proved a loyal asset and married into God’s people (Joshua 2-6).
  3. Ruth was a widow from a foreign nation. God redeemed her story (book of Ruth).


  • Consider writing out your genealogy and praying God’s grace over each person.