During the 1970s I spent a year in Zambia and occasionally visited Lusaka Baptist Church. There was a Bible class that I attended there, which still stands out in my memory. The class leader was Dr. Michael Eaton. The passage we were going to study that morning was Matthew 1.1-17 – Jesus’ genealogy. I can remember being a bit puzzled – what were we going to learn from this passage? It turned out – a very great deal. Dr Eaton’s masterly exposition opened up truths embedded Jesus’s genealogy in a way I had never seen before.
David Thommen clearly agrees about the importance of Jesus’ family tree. He writes, “I will never forget the zeal, the excitement, and the anticipation of my first Christmas sermon. . . . . . . . I wanted to preach something that I had never heard from the pulpit for Christmas, or any other time for that matter. . . . . When one of my elders asked me what I would be preaching on, I confidently proclaimed: “The genealogy from Matthew 1”. His response was different than I expected. “Why would you do that? You never preach the genealogies.” Convinced that all Scripture is profitable (2 Timothy 3.16-17), I soldiered forward undeterred. I pondered, in light of the rather unexpected response, why does the genealogy at the beginning of Matthew matter to the Christian at Christmas?” He shows us four reasons why it matters HERE.