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Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of April 3, 2005

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  • Adam DeBaugh
    Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of April 3, 2005 ********** As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho Press, here is a selection from our new book of daily
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 2, 2005
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      Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of April 3, 2005

      **********

      As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho
      Press, here is a selection from our new book
      of daily devotions, "Living as the Beloved:
      One Day at a Time," by the Rev. Dr. Sandra
      Bochonok.

      Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
      meditation. We hope you will be blessed.

      Thank you for forwarding this to your friends.

      The radical genealogy of Jesus

      "The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of
      David, the son of Abraham."
      Matthew 1:1

      Genealogy defines us. We yearn to know where we have
      come from. I certainly do and find most people both
      want and need to know the answers to the following
      questions: Who am I? Where did I come from? What
      were my ancestors like? Why am I the way I am? What
      are the traditions, strengths, and weaknesses in my
      family tree?

      The Gospel of Matthew intentionally opens with the
      genealogy of Jesus Christ. Because so many modern
      readers are unaccustomed to the foreign sounding names,
      it is easy to skim through the first seventeen verses
      and miss the significant inclusion of four women found
      in verses 3, 5, and 6.

      The lives of Tamar (Genesis 38), Rahab (Joshua 2:1-21),
      Ruth (The Book of Ruth), and Bathsheba who was "the wife
      of Uriah" (2 Samuel 11-12) offer important insights and
      a unique perspective for our reading adventure through
      Matthew's Gospel. Women were rarely highlighted as
      spiritual leaders in the Old Testament. Females were
      not highly valued in that culture. They had no rights
      and could not own property. Their culture was completely
      patriarchal.

      Yet the radical genealogy of Jesus Christ recognizes these
      women. By including their names in the genealogy, they are
      no longer invisible. Their lives bring us contemporary and
      relevant insights through their spiritual sensitivity,
      leadership, courage, and obedience to God, although their
      lives were incredibly difficult.

      Matthew is making a significant theological point by naming
      them. There is a place in this Gospel for both men and women.
      I personally find this refreshing. So much of church history
      has been written from a patriarchal perspective, automatically
      excluding many great women of faith. Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, and
      the wife of Uriah help us better understand the family tree
      of Jesus the Messiah, the son of David, the son of Abraham.

      Perhaps we have excluded others through our own willingness
      to support societal traditions. Yet the genealogy of Jesus
      Christ helps us see people through holy eyes.

      God, teach us remarkable truths about Jesus in this genealogy
      so frequently overlooked. Bless us with contemporary and
      relevant insights for living through our own genealogy.
      Teach us to value the men and women in our lives.
      Amen.

      Grace and peace,

      Chi Rho Press

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