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Luke 3:23-38 – Jesus’ Genealogy

Summary

Jesus' ancestry traced through his (adoptive) father, Joseph, extends back through King David, through Abraham, all the way to Adam.

Analysis

It is impossible to offer an endorsement of this genealogy's historical accuracy. Because it differs so sharply from the genealogy given in Matthew 1:1-17 and includes many names that are mentioned in no other documents, it is best not to give it too much significance as a definitive record. What is important about the genealogy, however, is the way in which it locates Jesus firmly within the history of God's relationships with the people of Israel. This Gospel makes its readers aware that Jesus stands within the same story as the ancestors Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and David. It is important to note that Luke extends Jesus' genealogy all the way back to Adam, God's first human creation. (By contrast, the genealogy in Matthew's Gospel links Jesus only as far back as Abraham.) This is consistent with Luke's outlook on the entire world and Luke's insistence that Jesus has relevance for all humanity, not merely for the Jewish people alone.

Luke 3:23-38

The Ancestors of Jesus

23 Jesus was about thirty years old when he began his work. He was the son (as was thought) of Joseph son of Heli, 24son of Matthat, son of Levi, son of Melchi, son of Jannai, son of Joseph, 25son of Mattathias, son of Amos, son of Nahum, son of Esli, son of Naggai, 26son of Maath, son of Mattathias, son of Semein, son of Josech, son of Joda, 27son of Joanan, son of Rhesa, son of Zerubbabel, son of Shealtiel,* son of Neri, 28son of Melchi, son of Addi, son of Cosam, son of Elmadam, son of Er, 29son of Joshua, son of Eliezer, son of Jorim, son of Matthat, son of Levi, 30son of Simeon, son of Judah, son of Joseph, son of Jonam, son of Eliakim, 31son of Melea, son of Menna, son of Mattatha, son of Nathan, son of David, 32son of Jesse, son of Obed, son of Boaz, son of Sala,* son of Nahshon, 33son of Amminadab, son of Admin, son of Arni,* son of Hezron, son of Perez, son of Judah, 34son of Jacob, son of Isaac, son of Abraham, son of Terah, son of Nahor, 35son of Serug, son of Reu, son of Peleg, son of Eber, son of Shelah, 36son of Cainan, son of Arphaxad, son of Shem, son of Noah, son of Lamech, 37son of Methuselah, son of Enoch, son of Jared, son of Mahalaleel, son of Cainan, 38son of Enos, son of Seth, son of Adam, son of God.

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10 February 2011

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