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Sermon Notes

Matthew 1:1-17

Christmas is often a time we look over photos from previous generations. Similarly, the New Testament opens with a statement about the generations preceding Christ’s arrival. Many on Matthew’s list were of noble character. Others, however, were shady characters. But surprisingly, Matthew puts a special emphasis on including them both. This list tells us something about why Christ came and whom he came for.

 Does your Family have…

  • Something happened that is embarrassing or awkward.
  • A parent or guardian ignored you while you were growing up.
  • A parent or guardian responded to you with anger instead of proper amounts of love and discipline.
  • Someone made some relational mistakes.
  • Some form of abuse that has never been fully recognized or dealt with?

Christ is not shocked by your sins, faults, addictions, and boneheaded mistakes.

Christ is not impressed with pedigree or status.

Jesus’ Genealogy

1. This genealogy proved that Jesus’ family tree was connected to King David.

2. This genealogy proved that Jesus’ family tree had some bad branches in it.

(Matthew 1:1-6)

Matthew Broke Two Traditional Rules

  • He added women to the genealogy
  • He highlighted broken people’s genealogy

Matthew told us not only why Jesus came (to fulfill the Old Testament prophecy) but who he came for (to connect with flawed people).

1. Judah (Genesis 38)

He slept with his daughter-in-law because he thought she was a prostitute and tried to cover up his indiscretion by having her executed, then was confronted with clear evidence that he was guilty.

2.  Tamar (Genesis 38)

She was the daughter in law that dressed up like a prostitute to trick her father-in-law into sleeping with her so she could become pregnant. And then she left town but was later caught.

3. Rahab (Joshua 2)

He was a recognized Canaanite prostitute who saved the Hebrew spies at Jericho.

4.  Bathsheba (2 Samuel 11)

Had a consensual affair with King David.

5.   King David (2 Samuel 13)

While a rock star in Israel’s history also had many failings as a father and a husband. (2 Samuel 13:21)


You do not need to live in shame. Since Christ came:

  • Even though he knew you were a sinner (Rom 5:6)
  • To pay for your sin (Rom 5:8)
  • To bring a life free from sinful choices (Rom 6:1-7)

Discussion Questions


  1. Matthew 1 tells of the generations that led up to Jesus’ arrival as the Messiah. Many on this list were noble, while others were shady characters. Matthew includes the stories of both. Pastor Rusty observes, “This list tells us something about why Christ came and who He came for.” Why did He come, and who did He come for?  
  1. Pastor Rusty asks us to reflect on our families and the good and bad characters in our family’s past. How has your family been a blessing to you?  
  1. Most families also have “skeletons in their closet.” Pastor Rusty reminds us, “Christ isn’t shocked by our sins, faults, addictions or boneheaded mistakes, and He is not impressed with our pedigree or status.” What does this mean to you? 
  1. Matthew broke two rules in his genealogy: 1) He included women and 2) He highlighted broken people. Why do you think Matthew did this?  
  1. In this genealogy, Matthew lists several Old Testament characters who are known for their mistakes: 1) Judah slept with his daughter-in-law. He tried to cover up his indiscretion by having her executed before he was confronted with indisputable evidence of his guilt. (Genesis 38) 2) Tamar dressed up as if she were a prostitute and tricked her father-in-law into sleeping with her. (Genesis 38) 3) Rahab was a Canaanite prostitute. (Joshua 2) 4) Bathsheba had an affair with King David. (2 Samuel 11) Why did Matthew highlight members of Jesus’ family who messed up?  
  1. Finally, there is King David, who was a “rock star” in Israel’s history, but who also failed terribly as a father and husband. (2 Samuel 13:21) All of us have moments in our lives when we were the kind of person God wanted us to be, and if we’re totally honest, we know we have also had other moments when we fell far short of God’s standards. Knowing that, how does this passage offer each of us encouragement?  


Pastor Rusty reminds us we don’t need to live in shame because Christ came:  

  • Even though He knew we were sinners. Thank God that He came to die for your sin even before you repented. (Romans 5:6)  
  • To pay for our sins. Thank God He has paid the price for your sin. (Romans 5:8)  
  • To offer us a life free from sinful choices. Ask God to help you live the godly life He desires you to live. (Romans 6:1-7)  

Based on these facts, thank God that Jesus came to earth for you.