First Matthew calls Jesus son of David, a title of the rightful heir to Israel's throne (as in Jer 23:5; 33:15; Ps. Sol. 17:21-23; 4QFlor). Other lines of evidence support the claim that Jesus' family stemmed from this royal lineage (for example, Rom 1:3; b. Sanhedrin 43a bar.; Euseb. H.E. 3.20; see also Meier 1991:216-19), and ancient Jewish polemicists never bothered to try to refute it. Thus Matthew opens and closes the genealogy with a title for Jesus that is significant but rare in his Gospel: Jesus Christ, that is, the messianic king (1:1, 18).
Next Matthew calls Jesus son of Abraham. This is especially significant because subsequent chapters further portray Jesus as Israel's representative, the epitome of its history (for example, 2:15; 4:2; see Kingsbury 1975:12; Longenecker 1975:141-43). As the heir of Abraham par excellence, Jesus can communicate Abraham's promised blessings to his people. (Some teachers regarded Abraham as the first Gentile convert to Judaism, which may also fit Matthew's theme.)
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your free trial.
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your subscription.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate of $3.99/month, click the button below.
Upgrade to remove banner ads and unlock new features!
You've successfully created your account! For the ultimate Bible Gateway experience, consider upgrading Bible Gateway Plus to get the most out of your new account. For just a few dollars each month, a Bible Gateway Plus upgrade gives you:
• A complete digital Bible study library integrated with your Bible Gateway account, with no expensive software to install.
• Access to 40+ study & reference books including the NIV Study Bible, the Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary, and the MacArthur Study Bible.
• Special during April only: full access to the NIV Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible
• An ad-free Bible Gateway experience.
• A risk-free, 30-day trial—you can cancel any time.