[Synoptic-L] genealogies in Matthew and Luke
- I seems to me that the subject of this genealogical
debate is much older than either of you realize, older
then either of the two Gospels in question.
The purpose of genealogies was most likely to
establish the right to be a priest, and some have
pointed out that it looks as though it was first
employed in the Gospels with respect to the Baptist.
Some say the Magnificat was originally put into the
mouth of Elizabeth. Here is the reference for the need
to establish the priestly line.
Ezrah 2:61 59 The following were those who came up
from Telmelah, Telharsha, Cherub, Addan,
and Immer, though they could not prove their fathers'
houses or their descent, whether
they belonged to Israel: 60 the sons of Delaiah, the
sons of Tobiah, and the sons of Nekoda, six hundred
and fifty-two. 61 Also, of the sons of the priests:
the sons of Habaiah, the sons of Hakkoz, and the sons
of Barzillai (who had taken a wife from the daughters
of Barzillai the Gileadite, and
was called by their name). 62 These sought their
registration among those enrolled in the genealogies,
but they were not found there, and so they were
excluded from the priesthood as unclean; 63 the
governor told them that they were not to partake of
the most holy food, until there should be a priest to
consult Urim and Thummim.
Serious business to any that took it seriously.
In the New Testament period before the Gospels we have
another take on the genealogy issue:
1Tim 1:2 To Timothy, my true child in the faith:
Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father
and Christ Jesus our Lord. 3 As I urged you when I was
going to Macedonia, remain at Ephesus that you may
charge certain persons not to teach any different
doctrine, 4 nor to occupy themselves with myths and
endless genealogies which promote speculations rather
than the divine training that is in faith;
Titus 3:4 but when the goodness and loving kindness of
God our Savior appeared, 5 he saved us, not because of
deeds done by us in righteousness, but in virtue of
his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and
renewal in the Holy Spirit, 6 which he poured out upon
us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that
we might be justified by his grace and become heirs in
hope of eternal life. 8 The saying is sure. I desire
you to insist on these things, so that those who have
believed in God may be careful to apply themselves to
good deeds; these are excellent and profitable to men.
9 But avoid stupid controversies, genealogies,
dissensions, and quarrels over the law, for they are
unprofitable and futile.
So you see Paul's response to debates concerning
genealogies note that he couples them with myths as
well. It would appear that both Matthew and Luke wish
to continue the debate that Paul denounced.
Rick Richmond rickr2889@...
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