Genealogy in the Bible

Genealogy is the study that traces the origin, family relationships, and names and surnames of an individual.

It is present in various parts of the Bible, especially the Old Testament. At first glance, a genealogical text may seem unnecessary and tiring, but the entire Bible is inspired by God and profitable for teaching (2 Timothy 3.16), and the ultimate goal of biblical genealogy was fulfilled to prove the origin of the Lord Jesus as Messiah.

In the past, it had the function of preserving the lineage of the tribes, the land they possessed, their bloodlines and legitimizing those who would serve God as Levites, priests and high priest.

The Jewish society was patriarchal. For this reason, only males would normally appear in the genealogy. However, a striking detail appears in the genealogy of the Lord Jesus, in order to show that salvation comes through faith and is extended to all: women were part of His story.

It is interesting that Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel or even Esther, who were important female figures in the Bible, were part of Christ’s lineage. But, seemingly insignificant women, who rebuilt their lives through faith and His mercy, were His ancestors. Take a look at some of their history:

* Tamar – was involved in a sexual conflict (Genesis 38);

* Rahab – a former prostitute (Joshua 2.1);

* Ruth – a foreigner (Ruth 4.18);

* Bathsheba – starred in a story of adultery (2 Samuel 11).

This teaches us that it does not matter who you are or what you do. Those who wish to have a new life must repent of their sins; this way, they will be able to become part of the family of God. The secret to remaining part of this family is to never allow the shadow of the past to torment you with doubts about your sincerity before God.

But, even though the Jewish people were so zealous with the tradition of genealogies and laws, they did not realize what was fundamental: the most awaited birth of all times – the Messiah, King and Savior Lord Jesus, who was born in Bethlehem, and was part of line of David. Prophecies already indicated this: Jeremiah 33.14-17; Micah 5.2; Psalms 69.9; Isaiah 9.1; Zechariah 9.9 and 11.13.

This teaches us that knowledge of Scripture, when it is not structured in faith, becomes dangerous. Unfortunately, this religious spirit has been seen in churches nowadays. People have used the practice of religious rites, biblical knowledge, positions and titles as a crutch, and lost the best of God, which is Salvation. Because, it is as the Word of God says: the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. 2 Corinthians 3.6

Today, we no longer use genealogy to confirm the ownership of possessions and much less to distinguish who belongs to which tribe, because we are one in the Lord Jesus, as the Apostle Paul says: where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all. Colossians 3.11

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