Matthew 1

The Genealogy of Jesus

Day 1
  The Ancestors of Jesus the Messiah 1 This is a record of the ancestors of Jesus the Messiah, a descendant of David[a] and of Abraham: 2 Abraham was the father of Isaac.
   Isaac was the father of Jacob.
   Jacob was the father of Judah and his brothers.
 3 Judah was the father of Perez and Zerah (whose mother was Tamar).
   Perez was the father of Hezron.
   Hezron was the father of Ram.
 4 Ram was the father of Amminadab.
   Amminadab was the father of Nahshon.
   Nahshon was the father of Salmon.
 5 Salmon was the father of Boaz (whose mother was Rahab).
   Boaz was the father of Obed (whose mother was Ruth).
   Obed was the father of Jesse.
 6 Jesse was the father of King David.
   David was the father of Solomon (whose mother was Bathsheba, the widow of Uriah).
 7 Solomon was the father of Rehoboam.
   Rehoboam was the father of Abijah.
   Abijah was the father of Asa.
 8 Asa was the father of Jehoshaphat.
   Jehoshaphat was the father of Jehoram.
   Jehoram was the father of Uzziah.
 9 Uzziah was the father of Jotham.
   Jotham was the father of Ahaz.
   Ahaz was the father of Hezekiah.
 10 Hezekiah was the father of Manasseh.
   Manasseh was the father of Amon.
   Amon was the father of Josiah.
 11 Josiah was the father of Jehoiachin and his brothers (born at the time of the exile to Babylon).
 12 After the Babylonian exile:
   Jehoiachin was the father of Shealtiel.
   Shealtiel was the father of Zerubbabel.
 13 Zerubbabel was the father of Abiud.
   Abiud was the father of Eliakim.
   Eliakim was the father of Azor.
 14 Azor was the father of Zadok.
   Zadok was the father of Akim.
   Akim was the father of Eliud.
 15 Eliud was the father of Eleazar.
   Eleazar was the father of Matthan.
   Matthan was the father of Jacob.
 16 Jacob was the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary.
   Mary gave birth to Jesus, who is called the Messiah.

 17 All those listed above include fourteen generations from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the Babylonian exile, and fourteen from the Babylonian exile to the Messiah.

Jesus, I have so often skipped these genealogies, but You must have put them in the bible for a reason., so I read it .  I know this is Joseph’s genealogy, and he was not your real father, yet I see in it, you are the Lord or forgiveness.  Look who is in this line:

Rahab was a prostitute who saved the spies at Jericho. 

Ruth was a Moabite, not an Israelite.

Solomon was the son of David and Bathsheba – which was a relationship that came from David’s sins of lust and murder.

I think Ahaz was one of the worst kings in Israel’s history.

Joseph had a very checkered past, but You made a great father out of it.  None of it mattered to You, Joseph was the man for You.

Jesus, help me to not dwell too long on my past and my sins.  Help me not limit what You can do in me because my past is so sinful.  You are the God of forgiveness and second chances.  You can make something good out of the bad.  Change me Lord so I can be the man You trust Your children (my kids) with.  Change me Lord.  Save me from passing on to them any of my own sins or the sins or my fathers.  Change me Lord.

Day 2
The Birth of Jesus Christ

 18This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. 19Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.
Father, it is no wonder You chose Joseph to be Jesus’ step-father.  His kindness, humility, and compassion are beyond belief.  His fiancé is pregnant, and he knows the Child is not his.  I would have been outraged and indignant, and thrown her aside in anger.  But Joseph is a “righteous man” and simply wants to end the relationship, probably presuming the father of the child will step forward and marry her. 

Joseph is so much like You Father.  I have sinned against You in horrible ways, over and over.  You have every right to cast me aside and put me forward for public shame, but You don’t.  My sins do put me further away from You, but, like Joseph, You never actually break our relationship off.  Only I would do that.

Lord, I am so different than Joseph and You.  I get so angry.  I act rashly and foolishly.  I want what is rightfully mine.  I am so proud when I should be humble.  Is there any hope for me Father?

Change me Father.  You have given me a wife and children.  I have been such a poor husband and father.  Change me.  Make me a husband like You. Make me a father like You.  My children are growing up so fast.  My marriage has already gotten some bad “habits”.  I’m running out of time Lord.  Change me, please hurry.

You are out of time, but I am never out of time.  Trust Me.

Day 3

 20But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”

Sometimes I wish an angel would come and tell me what to do, but then I read here and realize that jobs that come from angels, are very hard jobs!  Joseph obviously was a person who loved You Lord, and would be willing to listen.  I can’t imagine me being so willing.  Joseph and Mary both took huge risk to follow You Lord.  You ask so little of me: be kind to my wife and children, lead at work, be content, give to the poor, and yet I fail over and over.

Lord, help me be willing to follow You with reckless abandon.  Change me so I listen to You, and act, letting You worry about the future.  Please Lord, forgive me for all the things I have not done.  Forgive me for all the times I refused to hear You and when I heard You, refused to follow.  Change me Lord.  I have tried for so long to change and failed.  I can’t change me, only You Lord, only You.

Day 4

 22All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23″The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel”—which means, “God with us.”

Lord, thank-you for fulfilling every word of the Old Testament.  Seeing Your Word fulfilled gives me such hope for the future.  I can see, that no matter how outlandish or impossible it sounds, You do what You say.  So when I read “I will never leave you or forsake you”, I can count on it!  All the New Testament promises You make can be relied on, because You completed every word prophesied about You in the Old Testament.

So why am I so faithless Lord?  Why do I spend so much time in doubt and fear and despair?  I know You, or perhaps I think I do.  We are friends, and You love me completely, but we both know my love for You is lacking.  Jesus, help my faith and love to grow so I learn to live moment by moment in confidence in You and Your Word.  Some how Lord, change me so I love You with one millionth of the love You have for me.  Change me Lord, change me please.  I beg You Holy Spirit, change me.  Father, change me, change me now.

 24When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. 25But he had no union with her until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.

Day 5

Lord, how did You make Joseph so awesome?  Will You please make me a man like that?  When he took in Mary, the people of the time would either say he was a fool for taking in a wife who had been unfaithful, or say that Joseph had fornicated with her.  He could not look good when he did what You told him to do. 

Joseph obeyed You for 2 possible reasons, and both of them make him a hero. 

Perhaps he truly had the faith to believe the angel.  This meant he believed that his wife was pregnant by God and still a virgin.  He probably knew the scripture from Isaiah noted above.  He would have known he was being used by You to help raise the greatest man the world would ever know.  His faith, to believe that this could really be happening, is so beyond what I can imagine.  And even greater faith is needed to accept Your calling to be part of this monumental moment.  I know I am asking a lot Lord, but give me faith like that!

Or, perhaps Joseph didn’t really have much of an understanding of what was happening at all.  Then he was a man who knew  something special was going on and he loved his fiancé’ enough to rescue her from a fate of shame.  If he didn’t believe she was still a virgin, Joseph is a man of unimaginable forgiveness and faith. 

So Joseph either had the faith and wisdom to believe Mary was a virgin, or the faith, sympathy, and love to rescue her from an awful fate.  Lord, that kind of person can only be made by Your grace.  Please make me like Joseph Lord.  Change me.  Help me show my wife the love and kindness Joseph showed Mary.  Help me faithfully follow You, as Joseph did.  I am so far from that type of person now Jesus.  Change me.