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A Messed Up Family Tree Part 1: God’s Love in Action

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
December 22, 2020 3:00 am

A Messed Up Family Tree Part 1: God’s Love in Action

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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December 22, 2020 3:00 am

Christmas cards are often full of warm, fuzzy thoughts that make us say, “Awww.” But the first Christmas wasn’t warm and fuzzy. It was cold and inhospitable. And Jesus didn’t come to inspire heart-warming cards, He came to save lives. Today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie has some surprising facts you may not know about the Christmas story. We’ll see the perfect Savior, dwelled in the midst of earth’s imperfection, and accomplished His mission.

During this season, your year-end gifts help us reach the world and bring people to Jesus Christ with the hope of the gospel message.


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A New Beginning is the daily half-hour program hosted by Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Southern California. For over 30 years, Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries have endeavored to know God and make Him known through media and large-scale evangelism. This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.

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The following message from Pastor Greg Laurie is made possible by harvest partners, helping people everywhere know God. If you would like to know how you can become a harvest partner, just go to that's The story of Jesus is not about God helping people. It's about God saving lost people at Christmas time. The traditions of the home of agent to divert our attention from the real reason Christ came. Pastor Greg Laurie points out, it's God's love in action. We have God doing for sinners with the kids to for themselves, reminding us of why Jesus came. Jesus came to heal broken lives and to restore shattered told me in Christmas.

Rough and full of makers. They all, the first Christmas was warm and fuzzy.

It was cold and hospitable, and Jesus didn't come to inspire heartwarming cards to save lives today of a new beginning. Greg Laurie has rising fact, you may not know about the Christmas story we see the perfect Savior weld in the midst of Earth's imperfection had accomplished his mission. Notice all the rage right now is people tracing their ancestry sites like 23 and me and others will have you dig a little swab and said to them, and they'll tell you where your parents came from your grandparents, your great-grandparents, I read recently that 26 million people have taken it at home. Ancestry test how many of you done this already for quite a few of you actually were curious about our roof so there's a genealogist who attends our church and he came up to me recently is that you know I studied your family tree. This is what I do and die, and here's what I discovered and I have to admit I was pretty surprised by some of the things he came up with some of the people I found out that I have a relation to some closer some more distant. For starters, I found out that I am actually related to Johnny Cash that I wrote a book about a no we look nothing alike.

Johnny and I of course Johnny has here. I don't what, but I was kind of excited because I wrote a book about Johnny Cash. Obviously, and as it turns out my great-grandmother. I didn't even know this until this genealogist only my great-grandmother was named Leticia Cass. She was from the same cast family that immigrated from Scotland to Virginia so Leticia cashed my great-grandmother. Her daughter Stella and then Stella married a guy named Charles McDaniel. We called them daddy Charles and mama Stella that's my grandmother. Then Stella had a daughter named Charlene and I'm the son of Charlene so I'm distantly related to Johnny because I got it. Also, I'm actually related distantly to Steve McQueen.

I wrote a book on him to about that. I didn't know that when I wrote these books are just interesting to find these things out. I also found out that I'm distantly related to Billy and Ruth Graham so it's kind of a funny thing because all these you and I'm writing a book about Billy Graham right now so I didn't know any of this when I started writing these books. Okay, so that's amazing to hear. I also found out I'm a distant relation to Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson and Walt Disney now.

I've always loved Walt Disney Lincoln and Jefferson to they were okay but Walt Disney. I'm kind of kidding.

I really have always been enamored with Abraham Lincoln Everett a lot of books about him but tell Walt Disney you love always love the creativity of Disney and when I was a little kid that he was like my hero. I wanted to be Walt Disney and I grew up.

I just wish I could get some Disney passes out of the sum out what is it like a year-long grouse like $10,000.

Now it's okay so that's that might be kind of impressive that some people while you're related to these people. But I also found out I'm related to some more notorious figures I'm related to Benedict Arnold's ever heard of him. He was a traitor anyone and served for the British in the Revolutionary war.

And so I'm related to him. I'm also related to criminal John Dillinger. I'm not very excited about that I'm thinking of growing a mustache like he has maybe one day it finally I'm related to Jesse James, the outlaw okay so I've got some impressive people in my family tree and not so impressive people. I have some euros in a few zeros.

That's interesting to find out you say why do you bring this up because were going to talk now about the family tree of Jesus, you might be surprised to know there were a few rogues in the gallery. I'm talking prostitutes, liars, adulterers, even a murderer, you heard me right. All of these people and more were in the genealogy of Jesus Christ because the family tree of Jesus was decorated with notable sinners to bring this up because you know we all have relatives were a little bit embarrassed by right and I hate to break it to you but you might be one of the relative someone else's embarrassed by right and when the Christmas comes we get together with relatives somewhere. Looking forward to seeing some we wish we didn't have to see that all but here's the real message of the genealogy of Jesus, which is something we often skip over what we talk about the Christmas story. The genealogy of Jesus Christ basically says that God can change your story. Even if you made a mess out of your life. He can turn your mess into a message he can churn your test into a testimony, he can redeem the mess you have made of your life and we've all made messes have a way we've all done things we wish we had not done.

Instead, things we wish we had not said let's look now at this genealogy not hope this is a bore you to read a bunch of big gaps right now but as I'm reading through them. I'm going to encourage you to underline a few of these names that will talk about in a moments ago to Matthew one start in verse one read along with me. The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, underline that phrase, the son of David Abraham begot Isaac. Isaac begot Jacob. Jacob begot Judy and his brothers Judah begot Perez and Sarah by TMR underline T Mark Perez begot has run him from begot ram Randy God amended a minute, Debbie got Nash on now Sean begot Solomon Selman begot Boaz by Rahab underline Rahab boys begot Obed by Ruth oh bed begot Jesse, and Jesse became David, the king David the king begat Solomon by her who had been the wife of Uriah underline the phrase, the wife of Uriah. That's Bathsheba, by the way Solomon begot Rachel Boehm, Rachel Boehm begot up by job. I do begot Aesop never going to drop down to verse 15 ilio begot Eliezer are Eliezer R begot Mason. Mason begot Jacob. Jacob begot Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus was called the Christ. That's a genealogy of Jesus in the Gospel of Matthew through the line of Joseph, the genealogy of Jesus through Mary is found in the gospel of Luke and that's whether some discrepancies there because they're different people there some pretty surprising names in this lineup.

By the way most Jewish ideologies did not include women, for instance, a loose genealogy of Jesus.

There are no females, but Matthew includes five who are they, TMR Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba, and of course Mary a number of these women well were pretty immoral at one point, so why include answer, because Jesus story is not about God helping perfect people.

It's about God saving loss people, let me say it again in the story of Jesus is not about God helping perfect people. It's about God saving lost people in this genealogy, which is a key part of the Christmas story we have God doing for sinners what they can't do for themselves, reminding us of why Jesus came.

Jesus came to heal broken lives and restore shattered hopes. Let me say that again speaking to heal broken lives in the restore shattered hopes became to save us from our sin. That's the message you shall call his name Immanuel, for he is come to save his people from their sins pastor Greg Laurie will have the second half of this message in just a moment, everybody Greg Laurie here in finding you to join me every weekend for what we call Harvest at Home. It's a church service. It's a worship service. It's a Bible study and its wherever you wanted to be in your home in your car sitting on a beach walking down the street watching it on your phone wherever you are taking with you and be ministered to every weekend. Join us for Harvest at today. Pastor Greg is revealing Jesus checkered lineage to shows how the Lord extends his grace to all of us, no matter our imperfections.

Now let's look at this family tree of Jesus and pop a few of these names out.

Let's start with David in verse one. What a colorful character lot, Inc. in the Bible dedicated his life and his exploits.

He is uniquely identified as the man after God's own heart. He was plucked out of obscurity and anointed by the prophet Samuel to take the place of the wicked King Saul and he was the greatest of all of the kings of Israel we know about his victories.

The defeat of the massive giant of a man, Goliath 9'6" tall and we also know about is horrible failure with Bathsheba was identified in this genealogy is the wife of Arroyo. You could sum up David's name with those other two names David and Goliath's greatest victory. David and Siva's worst defeat, but yet he makes it into those exclusive genealogy in all of human history, and he's not just a part of it. He's the most important member of it because Jesus was identified in his earthly ministry as Jesus the son of David member Bart Emmaus was blind saw Christ coming and he said, son of David shouted, have mercy on me, that were told that the Lord said to Mary, and Luke 132 of Jesus.

He will be great will be called the son of the highest in the Lord God will give him the throne of his father David. David helped her all the mistakes he may yet he is part of this exclusive genealogy talk about the redemption of a life in the name did you know that God can redeem your life and you can redeem your name as well.

How many of you heard of the Nobel Peace Prize. Raise your hand up. I have one I'm giving it away today at Noida. But this is a prize that is given out to a person was work for the cause of peace and it was established by Alfred Nobel. But the story behind it is interesting as it turns out, offered Nobel was reading the paper one morning and he came to the obituary Colin and was shocked to find his name listed. It made a mistake and had said that Novella died.

He was very much alive and he was remembered for this thing. Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite not that particular time.

Historically, dynamite was used in warfare a lot in Nobel but I don't want to be known as the guy who invented dynamite so he decided to establish what would be known as the Nobel Peace Prize. So now when we hear his name today. We think of the peace prize. We don't think of dynamite. So basically what happened with Nobel is even being his name and he redeemed his reputation. That's what we see happening in the story God Dean David despite his shortcomings, number two, we have TMR in verse three. Who is she I have to admit to you, I'm shocked. She made this family trait that she was a woman who was a prostitute and not a godly woman that I can see from the story She's in the messianic line again. It's a story of redemption.

Then there's Rahab. Usually she just called Rahab the harlot Rahab the prostitute Rahab the hooker if you will. That's what she was. That's what she did in the city of Jericho, but when two spies were sent into check the city out before the Israelites invaded Joshua and Caleb. She hid the manor house because of that she was spared when the Israeli army came in and somehow she makes it in to the messianic line.

Absolutely amazing. Then we come to root like tamer and Rahab. She was not a Jewish woman.

She was a Gentile. She married one of the two sons born to a woman named Naomi, the sons of Naomi were named mainland and Chilean and their names meant sickly and pine, and then they both die, which almost seems like a self-fulfilling prophecy you named your kid sickly you know, why would you marry a guy named sickly.

I'm sickly want to get married. No wish to marry me guy send out the both of the boys are gone and she says to her mother-in-law, Naomi hate wherever you go. I'm in a go, your God's going to be my God and your people are going to be my people. There was as a result of this is woman who was a Moabites ends up in the most exclusive genealogy in all of human history. And then, that brings us to Bathsheba.

It's interesting she's identified as the wife of Uriah for six says that course will know the story David committed adultery with Bathsheba and so he tried to cover it up, which should not work so he effectively had Uriah killed in battle and she's identified that way.

So it's a little reminder. You see, this is how she became the mother of Solomon and the wife of David. She was the wife of Uriah, but again it just a reminder that God can take a life that's self-destructed and turn it around and he can put it back together and finally we have Mary the mother of Jesus mentioned in verse 16. Far from being promiscuous. Mary was the very opposite. She was virtuous and morally pure.

Quite an accomplishment considering the fact that she lived in the city called Nazareth. Nazareth was known for its wickedness. That is why when Jesus called the men, Nathaniel Nathaniel replied that I don't know if you will, but II think he said, can any good thing come out of Nazareth remembers why did he say that because it was known for sinfulness in the same in the day whatever happens in Nazareth stays in Nazareth, but I was the idea because Roman soldiers would stop over in Nazareth on their way from one place to another and more than one young girl living in the city ended up pregnant out of wedlock. So here is Mary. Despite this immoral background living this godly life. She's just a young girl. Some commentators think she was as young as 14, perhaps even 13.

She was living in a nowhere town in a nowhere place in the middle of nowhere. She wasn't some princess just an ordinary peasant girl but she was handpicked by God to be the most privileged woman who ever walked the earth. She was chosen by God to be the mother of the Messiah.

Mary is the only woman who actually had Jesus both in her womb, and later in her heart and does so Mary was chosen by the Lord and Gabriel was sent to tell her know when Gabriel shows up something big is coming down there to angels that stand out in Scripture.

Michael and Gabriel and when they appear. You know it's a big deal, so Gabriel is dispatched from heaven with the good news, then Mary will be the mother of the Messiah. Let's pop over to look. One known the developers together were dropped on the verse 26 Luke 126 down the six month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin's name was Mary.

Having come in, the angel said to her, rejoice, highly favored one, the Lord is with you.

Blessed are you among women, and when she saw him she was troubled at his saying, and considered what manner of greeting this was. There. Now let's understand what was actually happening. Gabriel was not suggesting the grace emanated from Marion to the problem in this is taught in the Catholic Church is that Mary was sinless and that God chose her because she was a sinless vessel and the way is sometimes translated. Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you.

Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus. Which is a prayer. The Catholics will pray sometimes appraisal sake be to pray. 10 our fathers in five Hail Marys right so we think of that as a brother was on a prayer from Gabriel to Mary when he says Hail Mary tale is just an old translation of a word that means hello or hi in California was a high. Maybe in the South also hey, if you're from Hawaii yields a house it right but is just a greeting affect Jesus himself uses same greeting after his resurrection when he saw two disciples the King James version says all hail is not healing disciples using high hello hi there I am so basically the angel says hello Mary, please paraphrase you been handpicked by God to be the mother of the Messiah. Bible says she was trouble, or literally agitated that comes from the Greek word freak out so we get our English phrase freak out from the others know Greek word freak out though sorry she was surprised. Why was she surprised she was surprised that God would pick someone like her.

She had true humility. Why would you choose someone like me for selling Mary Sabol hello, I've been living a godly life in this godless city.

It's about time someone recognize that I should have the highest privilege of all time and be the mother of the Messiah.

Note she said nothing of the kind that's because the more spiritual you are, the more aware you will be of your own sinfulness and listen. Mary was a sinner she was, not sinless.

She was a godly girl but she was a sinner because later in Luke after this announcement was made to her. She gave what is sometimes called her magnificent caught was really the Psalm of Mary and then she said there in Luke 146 my soul rejoices in God my Savior, my Savior, the Savior to and so what a special person to Greg Laurie good insights on Mary the earthly mother of Jesus. Today here on a new beginning, and there's more to come from this message. But if you missed any part of what Pastor Greg Broadus today. You can get replay right just look for the study, called a messed up family tree or requester CD by calling 1-800-821-3300.

That's 1-800-821-3300 Pastor Greg every year around Thanksgiving.

You point out how important it is to have an attitude of thankfulness and we're thankful both to God and to our listeners for their partnership in making the studies available try every dollar it takes to bring the studies each day is a dollar donated by someone who said you Pastor Greg company and I'll help you boy are part. Gratitude is an understatement. Yes it is ;-) I just want to thank everyone of you that have taken the time to get to this ministry. It just means so much. Not to me only, but to the people you impact because of your generosity. They can hear the word of God, at no charge.

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That's 1-800-821-3300 and we can take your call 24 seven or just go online to will Pastor Greg brings us more insight from this important Christmas message called a messed up family tree.

Join us next time you're on the new beginning.

But before we go. Pastor Greg what's on your mind. With Christmas almost here.

I'm thinking of the message of the Angels 2000 years ago where they said, peace on earth and goodwill toward men. Men we look around us right now were thinking where is the piece, but it's an interesting thing the angel said when they said, peace on earth and goodwill toward men could be better translated P centers among those with whom God is well pleased. The reason we have all the turmoil all the conflict all the violence is were not living lives that are pleasing to God. I hope that everyone of us will just check our own life. And Satan might pleasing the Lord will I live by seeking to walk with Christ, then you will have peace first in your heart and one day when Jesus returns, we will peace on earth and possible by harvest partners, helping people everywhere know God sign up for pastor grades free daily email,

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