Tuesday, January 23, 2018


LUKE 4:14-21

Luke 4:14 And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of him through all the region round about.

Susie: Jesus had been baptized in the Jordan River in the region of Judea, and had been tempted in the Judean wilderness.

Susan: Jesus left Judea and returned to Galilee at the urging and in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Susie: The Gospel of Mark chapter one describes Jesus teaching in Capernaum near the Sea of Galilee.

Susan: Exponential admiration of Jesus spread throughout the region.

Luke 4:15 And he taught in their synagogues, being glorified of all.

Susan: Everyone was eagerly anticipating the Sabbath that Jesus would teach in their synagogue.

Susie: Jesus’s fame spread word of mouth, and respect for His teaching grew.

Susan: The people who heard Him teach exalted Him, considered Him far above other teachers due to the authority with which He spoke.

Luke 4:16 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read.

Susie: Jesus entered His home-town synagogue on the sabbath day and stood up to read from the scroll of the scriptures. Don’t miss the fact that it was His “custom” to be in a place of worship on the sabbath.

Susan: This should be a reminder to us of the need to gather together with other believers to worship and learn about God. We must not let Pastor Pillow and Sister Sheets win on Sunday mornings. LOL

Hebrews 10:25 25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.

Luke 4:17 And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias (Isaiah). And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written,

Susie: I was wondering whether Jesus had specifically asked for this scroll or if was just the reading for that week. Therefore, we looked at the notes in one of our favorite resources when dealing with the Jewish background of the Bible:

The Complete Jewish Study Bible:

Note on Luke 4:16-17 – The custom in the synagogue now is to read through the Torah in a year. Another regular reading on Shabbat is called the haftarah (conclusion) consisting of portions from the Prophets or Writings related to the Torah portion of the week. It seems clear that if Yeshua (Jesus) was given the scroll of the prophet Isaiah, then He was being offered the haftarah reading, which is an honor given to a special guest.

Susie: The portion Jesus was given to read was Isaiah 61:1-2. He only read the first half of verse 2 because the second half relates to His future second coming to earth and was not applicable at the time.

Luke 4:18-19 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.

Susie: Some viewed this portion of Isaiah as applying to the prophet himself, but others see it as something that could only be accomplished by God, i.e. the Messiah.

Susan: The Spirit—the anointing, power, the impassioned purpose—of the Lord was upon Him. The passage lists six pillars of this prophesied purpose:

1.       To preach the gospel to the poor—perhaps related to the “poor in spirit” of the Beatitudes (Matthew 5:3)
2.       Heal the broken hearted—“them that mourn” (Matthew 5:4)
3.       Deliverance to the captives—those “oppressed” by Satan (Acts 10:38)
4.       Restore sight to the blind (John 9), and, also, those in dimly lit dungeons would now see the light of day
5.       To free the bruised or crushed—those suffering oppression, physically, mentally, and spiritually
6.       To preach the acceptable year of the Lord—the day of salvation (Isaiah 49:8) which was the primary reason the Son of God was incarnated as the God-Man.

Luke 4:20 And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him.

Susan: As Jesus sat down to teach, the people were hanging on His every word because of the authority with which He preached everywhere He went.

Susie: However, Jesus’s home town peeps were not prepared for what was about to come out of His mouth!

Luke 4:21 And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.

Susan: This was clearly a declaration that He was the long-awaited Messiah of the Jews.

Susie: I’m pretty sure this was not the sermon they thought they were going to hear that morning!


1.       What is the significance of Jesus teaching in the synagogue in Nazareth?
2.       Jesus was in the habit or custom of going to synagogue on the Sabbath. Do you believe we should see this as an example for us to follow regarding church attendance?

3.       Rather than teach on the passage He had read, Jesus made a seemingly simple statement. What was it, and why would it create a stir?

Sunday, January 21, 2018


LUKE 4:1-13

Susie: This is Luke’s account of the temptation of Jesus Christ. You may want to read another account as well in Matthew chapter four.

Luke 4:1-2 And Jesus being full of the Holy Ghost returned from Jordan, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, Being forty days tempted of the devil. And in those days he did eat nothing: and when they were ended, he afterward hungered.

Susan: Jesus was full of the Holy Spirit; for even though He was completely man, He was still completely God.

Susie: After He was baptized by John, the Holy Spirit led Jesus into the wilderness for a time of prayer, fasting, and ultimately temptation.

Susan: God does not tempt people Himself but uses Satan as the instrument of temptation, for Satan is under God’s control and must do God’s bidding.

James 1:13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:

Susie: We will see that Jesus was tempted in all the ways we are but remained sinless.

Hebrews 4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.

Susie: There are three broad categories of temptation, and Satan tried to trip Jesus up in each of them.

1 John 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

Susan: Jesus fasted 40 days and nights as Moses had at Mount Sinai (Deuteronomy 9:9) and Elijah had after the Lord consumed his offering on Mount Carmel, and he had slain the prophets of Baal, making a spectacle of him (1 Kings 19:8). Then we have the great understatement that Jesus was hungry! Famished would be the word I would use.

Susie: Enter Satan (who had probably been tempting Jesus the entire forty days) to capitalize on the fact that Jesus was starving and tempt Him in the area of “lust of the flesh”—putting your physical wants and even needs above the Lord’s will.

Luke 4:3 And the devil said unto him, If thou be the Son of God, command this stone that it be made bread.

Susan: The “if” in this verse is not best rendered as a question. Its better translation is “Since thou be the Son of God.” Satan was well aware that Jesus was truly the Son of God.

Susie: The Jews ate small round loaves of brown bread, so the stones probably looked very much like bread to Jesus in His famished state. Satan was tempting Him to use the power He had set aside to become human (Philippians 2:7) for His own immediate gratification.

Luke 4:4 And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.

Susan: Jesus’s rebuttals to Satan as concerns all three temptations recorded here are found in the book of Deuteronomy.

Susie: His first response explains why He used Scripture to refute the Devil’s reasoning. He quoted from a passage about the time when God preserved the Israelites with manna which I’m sure got pretty boring after an extended time. But God was making the point that being sustained spiritually by His word was far more important than delicious food for the body.

Deuteronomy 8:3 And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the Lord doth man live.

Job 23:12 Neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips; I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food.

Susan: Jesus had the scripture internalized because He wrote it, but He was portraying for us the example of the importance of internalizing God’s word in order to use it in our arsenal of Holy armor:

Ephesians 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

Luke 4:5-6 And the devil, taking him up into an high mountain, shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it.

Susan: You may be saying, “Wait a minute! Only God has the authority to put a person in that place of power!”

Susie: However, Scripture backs up what Satan claimed here—that God had given him authority over this world, even calling the devil the “prince of this world.”

John 12:31 Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.

2 Corinthians 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

Susie: For now, the whole world is under the curse and lies in the power of Satan (only as far as the Lord allows).

1 John 5:19 And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness.

Romans 8:19-22 (NIV) For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed.  For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God. We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time.

Luke 4:7 If thou therefore wilt worship me, all shall be thine.

Susan: Satan’s condition for giving Jesus all He could see was that He worship him, give him the place reserved for the Father.

Susie: Satan was appealing to the “lust of the eyes,” something ingrained in our fallen nature. A baby’s first words are often “no” followed by “mine!” If they see it, they want it. I remember reading children’s book titled More, More, More Said the Baby by Vera B. Williams. Our quest for more begins early in life and can only truly be satisfied by a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.

Susan: The devil was tempting Jesus to forfeit His purpose on behalf of the divine Kingdom and accept the poor substitute of ruling on earth.

Susie: Many of Jesus’s followers thought He should be an earthly king and conquer the Romans, but Jesus knew this was not the Father’s plan, and resisted the temptation to give in to their desires.  

Luke 4:8 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.

Susie: Jesus again rebuffed Satan by paraphrasing Scripture.

Deuteronomy 6:13-14 Thou shalt fear the Lord thy God, and serve him, and shalt swear by his name. Ye shall not go after other gods, of the gods of the people which are round about you. . .

Susan: In His replies, Jesus is paralleling His temptation with the wilderness experience of the Israelites, with the difference being that He succeeded in not giving in to the devil where the Israelites had failed.

Susie: We are not to place anything or anyone above the Lord our God. He alone is worthy of worship. We trust Him alone to give us what we need.

Matthew 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

Luke 4:9 And he brought him to Jerusalem, and set him on a pinnacle of the temple, and said unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down from hence: For it is written, He shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee: And in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.

Susie: Satan then tempted Jesus in the area of the “pride of life” by telling Him to jump from a height that would surely be suicidal. He is again trying to trick Jesus into displaying His power as deity rather than remaining in humble subjection to the Father’s will.

Susan: God’s enemy is trying to get Jesus to test God, to see if His Father truly would send angels to save Him. Satan even employed scripture to try to trick Jesus:

Psalm 91:11-12 For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.

Susie: The Scripture was pointing out that we can trust God, not that we should put this trust to the test.

Susan: God is trustworthy and does watch over us, but we should not set up situations in which we need to be rescued. There are times we cannot make sense of what God is doing, but He is still trustworthy, and we should not allow those times to create doubt in our minds.

Luke 4:12 And Jesus answering said unto him, It is said, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.

The MacArthur Study Bible has a good note on the related verse from Matthew 4:7:

Christ replied with another verse from Israel’s wilderness experience (Deut. 6:16)—recalling the experience at Massah, where the grumbling Israelites put the Lord to the test, angrily demanding that Moses produce water where there was none (Ex. 17:2–7).

Deuteronomy 6:16 Ye shall not tempt the Lord your God, as ye tempted him in Massah.

Exodus 17:7 And he called the name of the place Massah, and Meribah, because of the chiding of the children of Israel, and because they tempted the Lord, saying, Is the Lord among us, or not?

Luke 4:13 And when the devil had ended all the temptation, he departed from him for a season.

Susie: There were temptations for Jesus throughout His ministry as crowds continued trying to make Him an earthly King and detractors were always demanding a “sign,” a miracle to prove He was the Messiah.

Susan: However, Satan waited until the most opportune time, when Jesus was in His weakest moment, to attack Him will full force again. In the Garden of Gethsemane, in His humanity, Jesus prayed with all His strength even to the point of sweating drops of blood that He be allowed to avoid the cross, the weight of our sin, and the separation from God the Father. He and the Father had always been one; and in His humanity, He was paralyzed by the thought of the impending separation when the Father could not look upon the Son because He bore our sin.

Susie: Agonizing in prayer was not sinful nor a lack of trust in His father. It was proof that He was fully man as well as fully God. Satan did not defeat Jesus in the wilderness, nor did He defeat Him by causing Him to abandon the Father’s plan of redemption. Jesus prayed three times that this “cup” might be avoided, but all three times He submitted to the will of God (Luke 22:39-46).

Susan: Jesus passed every test that Israel had failed.

Susie: He passed every test that we fail in our human frailty. Therefore, He served as the perfect sacrificial Lamb to redeem us from sin.

Susan: Because of Jesus’s death in our place on the cross, and His subsequent resurrection from death, God sees those of us who believe as 100% clean!


1.  Who authorized Satan to tempt Jesus?
2.       With what weapon did Jesus combat Satan’s temptations?

3.       How can we prepare in advance for the temptations we will surely face in this world?

Thursday, January 18, 2018


LUKE 3:34-38

Luke 3:34 Which was the son of Jacob, which was the son of Isaac, which was the son of Abraham, which was the son of Thara, which was the son of Nachor,

Susan: Jacob means “He grasps the heel. Supplanter.” He was given this name because when they were born, he was grasping the heal of his twin brother, Esau.

Susie: You may remember that Esau sold Jacob his birthright as firstborn for some stew (Genesis 25:29-33) and that Jacob and his mother, Rebecca, deceived his father into giving him the blessing reserved for the firstborn (Genesis 27), thus living up to his name once more.

Susan: God eventually gave Jacob a new identity and a new name—Israel which means “May God prevail. He struggles with God. God perseveres; contends,” after he wrestled with the angel of the Lord (possibly a theophany) and suffered permanent hip dislocation (Genesis 32).

Susie: He would be the heir to the Abrahamic covenant and his descendants would be the nation of Israel.

Susan: Isaac (He laughs) was the son promised to Abraham and Sarah in their old age at which both of them laughed (Genesis 17:17; Genesis 18:12). He was a “type” of Christ in that Isaac was the only begotten son of Sarah, and Abraham was asked to sacrifice him as a burnt offering (Genesis 22:2).

Susie: The angel stopped Abraham just as he raised the knife to slit Isaac’s throat and provided a substitutionary sacrifice of a ram caught in a thicket (Genesis 22:13-14). Isaac’s descendant, Jesus, would become the perfect sacrificial Lamb and serve as the substitutionary sacrifice for the sin of all who trust in Him (John 1:29).

Susan: Jesus’s death on the cross and subsequent resurrection put an end to the daily slaughter of animals in the Jewish sacrificial system that God had previously required (Hebrews 10).

Susan: Abraham means “Father of a multitude” which was the new name God gave Abram (High father, Exalted father) after revealing to Him that he would father not only a son in his old age, but an entire nation (Genesis 17:5). Thara, Tarah, or Terah means “wild goat or turning, wandering.”

Susie: Terah had begun the journey to Canaan with his sons and their wives, but he died in Haran (Genesis 11:29-32), so perhaps he was a wanderer.

Susan: Nachor means “noble or burning.” It seems Abraham’s brother, Nahor, was named after his grandfather.

Luke 3:35 Which was the son of Saruch, which was the son of Ragau, which was the son of Phalec, which was the son of Heber, which was the son of Sala,

Susan: Saruch means “branch.”

Susie: I was thinking, “Why on earth would a person name their son branch?” when I remembered I had friends in elementary school whose actual given names were Space and Rocket.

Susan: I did not recall that in Mary’s genealogy there was someone whose name would remind me of spaghetti sauce! Ragau means “friend.” Phalec means “division” and is sometimes listed as Peleg meaning “brook or sect.” Heber or Eber means “fellowship, production or one that passes.” Sala or Salah means “uncertain, perhaps firm.”

Luke 3:36 Which was the son of Cainan, which was the son of Arphaxad, which was the son of Shem, which was the son of Noah, which was the son of Lamech,

Susan: Cainan or Kenan means “acquisition.” Arphaxad or Arpachshad means “one that releases.”  Does Cainan acquire what Arphaxad releases? Sem or Shem means “renown or name.” We found an interesting tidbit on him in All the Men of the Bible as quoted at www.biblegateway.com

From his name, it is to be inferred that Shem was a distinguished person. The men of Babel sought to make themselves a name (Gen. 11:4) and become, thereby, rivals of Shem. The greatness of Shem arose from the fact that he was a forerunner of Christ. Shem’s name meaning “renown” foreshadowed the greater name “above every name” before which every knee shall bow (Luke 3:36). In offering praise to God, Noah said, “Blessed be the Lord God of Shem” (Gen. 9:26).
Susie: When Ham saw their father, Noah, drunken and naked, it was Shem and Japheth who walked in backwards to cover him up. Noah means “rest,” and his father explained why he gave him that name:

Genesis 5:29 And he called his name Noah, saying, This same shall comfort us concerning our work and toil of our hands, because of the ground which the Lord hath cursed.

Susan: We remember Noah as the man who built and ark before it had ever rained in order to save his family and the animals from the flood.

Susie: One of my favorite songs as a child was Tennessee Ernie Ford singing, “Noah Found Grace in the Eyes of the Lord.” Click the link below to hear it.

Susan: Lamech means “overthrower, a strong young man or who is stuck.” I have no idea why his father named him this.

Luke 3:37 Which was the son of Mathusala, which was the son of Enoch, which was the son of Jared, which was the son of Maleleel, which was the son of Cainan,

Susan: Mathusala or Methuselah means “man of the javelin or it shall be sent (deluge).” Another interpretation of his name was “when he is dead it shall be sent (flood).”

Susie: He has the distinction of being the person with the oldest recorded age in the Bible, 969 years (Genesis 5:27). The flood did not occur until after his death.

Susan: Enoch means “teacher, initiated, dedicated.” He was one of two men in the Bible who did not see death but were taken directly to Heaven by the Lord. The other was Elijah. Enoch is one of my favorite Biblical figures because he walked with God. I walk with God as Enoch did through my relationship with Jesus.

Genesis 5:21-24 21 And Enoch lived sixty and five years, and begat Methuselah: And Enoch walked with God after he begat Methuselah three hundred years, and begat sons and daughters: And all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty and five years: And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.

Susan: Jared means “descending or he that descends.” Maleleel means “praise of God.” We have another Cainan meaning “acquisition.”

Susie: It was and still is common to name a child after his father or a favorite or famous ancestor.

Luke 3:38 Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God.

Susan: Enos or Enosh means “man is his frailty.” The Bible connects the birth of Enos with the beginning of prayer:

Genesis 4:26 And to Seth, to him also there was born a son; and he called his name Enos: then began men to call upon the name of the Lord.

Susie: Seth or Sheth means “compensation, appointed or substituted.” Eve named him Seth because he was born after Cain slew her second born son, Abel.

Genesis 4:25 And Adam knew his wife again; and she bare a son, and called his name Seth: For God, said she, hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew.

Susan: Adam means “of the ground or taken out of the red earth,” and God indeed formed him from dirt.

Genesis 2:7 And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

Susan: Adam and his wife, Eve, were the first to receive the promise of a Savior who would defeat Satan.

Genesis 3:15 (AMP)     “And I will put enmity (open hostility) Between you and the woman, And between your seed (offspring) and her Seed; He shall [fatally] bruise your head, And you shall [only] bruise His heel.”

Susan: Sin entered the world through the first man, Adam. But Jesus, the Son of Man, the Messiah, reconciled us to God through His death and resurrection (Romans 5).

Ponder this: God formed the first man out of dirt and breathed the breath of life into Him. One of Adam’s sons murdered the other, but God sent him a replacement in his son, Seth. Seth had a child he named Enos because in some way he reminded him of the frailty of man and the need to call out to the Lord. Throughout the Bible, the names of people remind us to rely on God who provides for us. What’s in a name? Look back over a few and meditate on God’s hand in your own life.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018


LUKE 3:31-33

Susie: We now continue with Luke’s genealogy of Jesus through His mother, Mary. Why? Because many people skip the genealogies, and we do not like to skip anything. In this section, we will find some more familiar names.

Luke 3:31 Which was the son of Melea, which was the son of Menan, which was the son of Mattatha, which was the son of Nathan, which was the son of David,

Susan: Melea means “fullness.” Menan or Menna means “consoling or comforting.” Mattatha means “a gift,” and he was the grandson of King David. Nathan means “He hath given,” and he was the third son of David.

Susie: Nathan is listed as having been born to David in Jerusalem, in other words, after he began to reign as king (2 Sam. 5:14; 1 Chron. 3:5; 14:4). Nathan (in Mary’s lineage) was born before Solomon who is listed in Joseph’s lineage found in Matthew chapter one.

Susan: David means “beloved,” a man whom the Lord called “a man after my own heart” (1 Samuel 13:14).

Susie: He is the man God chose to replace Israel’s first king, Saul, after Saul had sinned against God. He is known as a shepherd, a giant slayer, a warrior, a beloved friend of Jonathan (Saul’s son), and a mighty king.

Susan: The Messiah would be a descendant of David and heir to his throne:

2 Samuel 7:12-13 And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom forever.

Susie: King David was aging and expressed a desire to build a temple for God. However, through Nathan the prophet, God let him know that he was not the one to build the temple. His son, Solomon, would have that privilege. God promised that David’s kingly line would pass on to his descendants.

Susan: As we have seen, Jesus’s earthly lineage shows he was descended from David through Solomon on Joseph’s side and Nathan on Mary’s side of the family. No human except the God-man, the Messiah, could live forever. The throne would pass to the Messiah, Jesus, whose kingdom would never end.

Luke 3:32 Which was the son of Jesse, which was the son of Obed, which was the son of Booz, which was the son of Salmon, which was the son of Naasson,

Susan: Jesse means “wealthy-Jehovah exists.” He was indeed wealthy because Jehovah had blessed him. He had eight sons all together of which David was the youngest. David was in charge of his father’s sheep. Jesse was the son of Obed which means “worshiper or a servant who worships.”

Susie: Obed’s mother was Ruth the Moabite who followed her mother-in-law, Naomi, back to Israel after the death of their husbands. She converted to Judaism and married Boaz.

Susan: Booz or Boaz, meaning “swift,” was the kinsman-redeemer or close male relative of Naomi’s husband and son. He entered into a levirate marriage with Ruth in order to produce offspring for his deceased relative’s family and redeem their land for the widows.

Ruth 2:1 And Naomi had a kinsman of her husband's, a mighty man of wealth, of the family of Elimelech; and his name was Boaz.

Susie: Boaz’s parents were Rahab and Salmon whose name means “peaceable.” You may remember that Rahab was the Canaanite woman in Jericho who hid the Jewish spies sent out by Joshua.

Hebrews 11:31 By faith the harlot Rahab perished not with them that believed not, when she had received the spies with peace.

Susan: Salmon’s father was Naasson meaning “enchanter or serpent of the sun.” Yuck, that name makes me want to take a shower.

Luke 3:33 Which was the son of Aminadab, which was the son of Aram, which was the son of Esrom, which was the son of Phares (Perez), which was the son of Juda,

Susan: Aminadab means “the kinsman is generous,” an interesting name; but scripture does not tell us why he was named thus. Aram, sometimes Arni or Ram, means “high or elevated.” Esrom means “dart of joy, division of a song.” Phares or Perez means “breach or rupture.”

Susie: Phares (Perez) was the son of Judah by his Canaanite daughter-in-law, Tamar, who tricked him into thinking she was a prostitute in order to bear a child. Phares was the younger twin because his brother stuck his arm out of the womb first, but Phares traded places with him and was born first (Genesis 38:29).  Much later, in the book of Ruth, when the people find out that Boaz is serving as kinsman-redeemer to marry Ruth and produce offspring for her late husband (levirate marriage), they bless him in the following way:

Ruth 4:12 (KJV) And let thy house be like the house of Pharez, whom Tamar bare unto Judah, of the seed which the Lord shall give thee of this young woman.

Susan: Juda or Judah means “praised or the Praised one. Prophesy said that the Messiah would be from the tribe of Judah.

Genesis 49:10 The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.

Susie: The scepter was a symbol of power and authority for either a tribal leader like Judah or the kings which would descend from him, including the Messiah.

Susan: Shiloh is a coded reference to the Messiah and may derive from a word meaning “peace-maker.” Jesus was the Prince of Peace, the very source of our peace.

Ponder this: Mary and Joseph were both descendants of David and thus Abraham. There were many people of great faith in their lineage. Will your descendants look back and say that their grandmother or grandfather was a godly person, a person after God’s own heart? Ask yourself if you are leaving a heritage of faith for the ones who follow you, whether your physical descendants or your spiritual descendants.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

LUKE 3:23-30 Genealogy of Jesus: What's in a Name?

LUKE 3:23-30
Genealogy of Jesus:
What's in a Name?

Luke 3:23 And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, which was the son of Heli,

Susie: Luke traced the lineage of Jesus through Mary. Wait, what? Yes, this lineage is through Mary according to this note from the Macarthur Study Bible:

Luke’s genealogy moves backward, from Jesus to Adam; Matthew’s moves forward, from Abraham to Joseph. Luke’s entire section from Joseph to David differs starkly from that given by Matthew. The two genealogies are easily reconciled if Luke’s is seen as Mary’s genealogy, and Matthew’s version represents Joseph’s. Thus the royal line is passed through Jesus’ legal father, and His physical descent from David is established by Mary’s lineage. Luke, unlike Matthew (see note on Matt. 1:3), includes no women in his genealogy—even Mary herself. Joseph was “the son of Heli” by marriage (Heli having no sons of his own), and thus is named here in v. 23 as the representative of Mary’s generation.

Susie: Many of these men are mentioned only here in the Bible. Therefore, not much is known about them. We will share brief information on those who are mentioned elsewhere and give cross references for those of you who want to explore further. The main purpose of the genealogies found in both Matthew and Luke was to link Jesus to the kingly line of David and to Abraham the father of the nation of Israel. However, Luke goes beyond that to trace Jesus’s earthly lineage all the way back to Adam, the first man, thus showing Jesus is the “Seed” promised to Eve (Genesis 3:15).

Susan: We will give you the meaning of each man’s name because names are significant. Notice how many of these names point to the coming King, the Messiah. Heli means “ascending, climbing up” and is a derivative of the name Eli. He was actually the father of Mary and the father-in-law of Joseph.

Luke 3:24 Which was the son of Matthat, which was the son of Levi, which was the son of Melchi, which was the son of Janna, which was the son of Joseph,

Susie: Matthat, the grandfather of Mary, is mentioned only here and in Matthew’s genealogy.

Susan: Matthat means “a gift.”

Susie: We know nothing else about this Levi except that even though he was of the tribe of Judah, he was named after the father of the Levites who served as priests in the temple.

Susan: Levi means “joined or an adhesion”. Melchi means “Jehovah is my King,” and that is about all that is know about this ancestor of Jesus. Perhaps he was named after an earlier Melchi in the lineage. Janna or Jannai means “He will answer.” Joseph means “may God add or increaser.” Surely, this Joseph was named for other Josephs in the family and ultimately for the Old Testament Joseph who increased the storehouses of Egypt and saved his family from starvation.

Luke 3:25 Which was the son of Mattathias, which was the son of Amos, which was the son of Naum, which was the son of Esli, which was the son of Nagge,

Susan: Mattathias means “gift of Jehovah,” and this is all we know about him other than there was another ancestor of Joseph five generations before him with the same name. Amos means “burden bearer or one with a burden.” He was possibly named after an Amos from a previous generation who was a herdsman called by God to be a prophet (Amos 7:14-15). Naum (Nahum) means “compassionate, comforter, or full of comfort”.

Susie: Nahum who was an ancestor of Mary may have been named after the prophet who preached the complete doom of Nineveh when they went back to their evil ways after repenting due to the message of Jonah. Ironic that the name involved compassion and comfort, isn’t it?

Susan: Esli means “God at my side or Jehovah hath reserved.” He probably lived after the captivity. Nagge (Naggai) means “splendor of the sun.”

Luke 3:26 Which was the son of Maath, which was the son of Mattathias, which was the son of Semei, which was the son of Joseph, which was the son of Juda,

Susan: Maath means “wiping away”.

Susie: Maath lived after the time of Zerubbabel who was governor of Judah during the time of Ezra and Nehemiah the wall-builder.

Susan: Then there is another Mattathias whose name means “gift of Jehovah.” Semei means “hear or obey” and may be the same person as Shemei. Joseph, a.k.a Josech in some translation was one of several Joseph’s in the family line of Mary, Jesus’s mother. The name means “may God add or increaser.”  Juda whose name could be translated Joda which means “haste,” and he lived at the time of the exile.

Luke 3:27 Which was the son of Joanna, which was the son of Rhesa, which was the son of Zorobabel, which was the son of Salathiel, which was the son of Neri,

Susan: Joanna, also spelled Joanan means “Jehovah hath been gracious.” Rhesa means “will or course”. Zorobabel or Zerubbabel means “an offspring of babel or begotten in Babylon.”

Susie: Zerubbabel is the first person in the genealogy of Mary for whom we have more information. As his name implies, he was born during the Babylonian captivity. He led a group of captives back to Israel and was instrumental in rebuilding the temple (Zechariah 4:1-14) which is sometimes referred to “Zerubbabel’s temple.” He was in the kingly line of David and served as a governor under Persian rule. You can read more about him in the books of Ezra and Nehemiah.

Susan: Salathiel which is also rendered Shealtiel means “Ii have asked of god.” He was the father of Zerubbabel who led the captives back from Babylon. Neri means “light of the Lord.”

Luke 3:28 Which was the son of Melchi, which was the son of Addi, which was the son of Cosam, which was the son of Elmodam, which was the son of Er,

Susan: Here is another Melchi which means “Jehovah is my king.” There is no other mention of him in the Bible. Addi means “my witness or adorned.” Cosam means “most abundant.” Elmodam or Elmadam means “the God of measure.” Er means “awake or on the watch,” and all we know for sure is that he lived between the time of King David and Governor Zerubbabel.

Luke 3:29 Which was the son of Jose, which was the son of Eliezer, which was the son of Jorim, which was the son of Matthat, which was the son of Levi,

Susan: Jose means “aid.” Eliezer means “God is my help.”

Susie: There are several Eliezers in the Bible, but nothing more is known about this particular one.

Susan: Jorim means “he that exalts the Lord.” Matthat, sometimes rendered Matthan, means “a gift.” Levi means “joined or adhesion.”

Susie: This Levi is in the line of King David which means he is descended from Judah. Therefore, even though he bears the name Levi he was not a “Levite” or priest.

Luke 3:30 Which was the son of Simeon, which was the son of Juda, which was the son of Joseph, which was the son of Jonan, which was the son of Eliakim,

Susan: Simeon (Symeon) means “hearing, hears and obeys or hearing with acceptance.”

Susie: This Simeon who lived generations before the birth of Jesus bears the same name as the man who was granted the privilege of holding the baby Jesus in order to die in peace, knowing the Messiah had arrived.

Susan: Juda (Judah) means “praise”. His father was yet another Joseph, “May God add or increaser.” The Joseph who saved the nation from starvation, the grandson of Isaac, was a well-respected leader. Therefore, it makes sense that this would be a popular Hebrew name. Jonan or Jonam means “God hath been gracious.” Eliakim means “God is setting up or doth establish.”

Susie: Our next lesson will cover some of the more well-known men in the genealogy of Jesus.

Ponder This: Look back over the meanings of the names listed in Jesus’s lineage. Do you see a foreshadowing of their descendant, the Anointed One, the Messiah?