Scoundrels & Saints
Ever wonder what dark secrets are hiding in your family tree? It seems people are fascinated by genealogy today. Thanks to modern technology you can do computer searches that will rebuild your family history over a thousand years. Imagine how hard that was to keep track of in Bible days – but they did. Why? Because who is in our lineage can be of great value in understanding God’s plan for our lives; it certainly was in Jesus’ life.
When I was young I used to wonder why certain passages of the Bible were filled with genealogies. You know, those long lists of who begat who and so on and so forth. It seemed boring so I would usually skip right over them to get to the part of the story that really mattered. Eventually, as I learned more about the Bible and the importance of those genealogies, I realized God has something very important for us to learn from them.
Nobody’s family tree is perfect. We all come from a long list of scoundrels and saints. Some people love to research their family tree hoping to find some famous person, like some great hero of the Revolutionary War or whoever, as if that somehow makes them more important. The truth is what makes us important is that we are who we are because of everyone down the line; alter just one of them and we wouldn’t be who we are (an amazing fact of reproductive science). That means the scoundrels are just as important as the saints. The fact is everyone matters, including you!
In God’s infinite wisdom He planned Jesus the Messiah to be born not just of the Royal lineage of King David, as we so often hear, but also the scandalous lineage of a prostitute (Rahab) and several idol worshiping Kings of Israel. All of us have some scoundrels in our family tree we would probably rather not be known for, but Jesus’ lineage shows us how important those scoundrels are; they show us everyone matters to God, and God can turn any bad lineage around for good.
The Messiah’s family tree was an ordinary tree full of scoundrels and saints. It’s just one more way God wanted us to see that every life has significance, and no one’s life is beyond His redemption.Yes, even yours and mine matter also.
As you gather with family to celebrate the birth of Jesus, spend some time thinking back through your family. In fact, why don’t you comment below and tell me who some of your scoundrel and saint relatives are? Remember the ones who have gone on to the ages before you, the scoundrels and the saints. Thank God for all of them. They all had a part in making you, and that is special – you are special. Have a very Merry and Blessed Christmas wherever you are, and safe travels for wherever you go.
Grace & Peace,
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled.”