Let’s take a walk through the book of Matthew together and learn more about what Matthew can teach us about Jesus!
Many say that Matthew’s Gospel sets out to prove that Jesus is the King of the Jews. To do this, he would need to prove that he was of the correct lineage, that he fulfilled the prophecies that were foretold of him, and also confront the idea that the long-promised King would deliver Israel from Rome and reestablish his Kingdom.
We’re going to tackle these different items by chapters, as we examine the Jesus that Matthew wants us to see and know about, and be challenged by his teachings and the life that he lived.
Matthew starts out his Gospel with a genealogy of difficult to pronounced names to make a point: That Jesus was able to be King of the Jews because he was a descendant of both Abraham and David. Matthew does this in sets of fourteen names, even though there are more names in between.
Both Joseph and Mary descend through David’s line. This was important because Jehoiachin was told that he would not have a descendant sit on the throne of David, but the Messiah would. How could that be so? A son of David, adopted by a descendant of Jeconiah.
The Betrothal of Mary and Joseph
Mary and Joseph were betrothed—legally pledged to be married to one another. This was the period of time where the man would prepare for married life—a house, a job, he would be pledged, but would not consummate the marriage relationship.
Jewish law would consider them married, and having Mary with child would be considered adultery if Joseph had pressed the issue. He was an upright man, and decided to divorce her privately rather than see her killed.
The Foretold Messiah
An angel appears to Joseph in a dream, and tells him that Mary is pregnant with the Messiah. He is instructed to name him Jesus—Yeshua, from where we get Joshua or Jehovah saves. Jesus will save His people from their sins, and this is to be told through His name. The angel calls back to the book of Isaiah to show Joseph that Mary is bearing the Messiah—the sign would be a virgin bearing a child, calling him “God with us.”