Contradictions Part 6: Jesus’s Genealogy

So I came across this Yahoo! Answers post where the person is asking sincerely how to explain the apparent contradiction of Jesus’ Genealogy in the bible, because it is research project for school.  And sadly about half the Christians gave a cop-out answer without actually giving a real explanation to the apparent discrepancy……… “No contradiction in The Living Word at all!” ……………… “there is no contradiction. Read it carefully” ………….. “There isn’t a contradiction but two points of view.”

The Bible genealogy of Jesus in Matthew 1 and Luke 3:23-38 is probably one of the most blatantly obvious contradictions in the Bible. There are several different theories and possibilities for the contradictory genealogy, but which one is the most scripturally sound? And to throw something else into the discrepancy, there is another genealogy of the descendants of David before and after; 1 Chronicles 1-3. Matthew’s comes closest, but it’s still different in several areas. He actually omits several names from his list: Ahaziah, Jehoash, Amaziah, and Jehoiakim.

So I actually wanted to do my own post on the contradiction of Jesus’ Genealogy, but realized this is one of the most studied contradictions in the bible, there is no need for me to go and duplicate another post on this topic.  When so many others have done research on this topic.  That is why I re-blogged this From Nate of The Finding Truth Blog, cause I think his is probably the most well-rounded and straight to the point.

Overall there are three underlying theories as the bible contradiction of Jesus Genealogies….

  • Theory #1: One is a legal biology as in regard to marriage, the other is a biological ancestral line.  This is supported by the Website Complete Bible Genealogy
  • Theory #3: Which is probably the least accepted, that one of them is right and the other is wrong.  As the Christian Website Divine Evidence suggest that Matthew may be the gospel with the errancy,  “Why does Luke record more generations from Abraham to Jesus than Matthew? One possible solution, referred to as an open genealogy, is that Matthew paraphrased Jesus’ ancestors in order to make the Gospel easily remembered for oral evangelism.

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The first post in this series can be found here.

Personally, I think this is one of the clearest contradictions in the Bible. Why does the Bible give us Jesus’ genealogy? I can think of no other reason than for it to serve as proof of his descent from David. But it fails this purpose since we’re given two differing genealogies that both claim to come through Joseph.

Some have tried to answer this by saying that Matthew 1:1-16 records Joseph’s true genealogy and Luke 3:23-38 records Mary’s. They surmise that Mary must have been the only daughter of Heli (Luke 3:23); therefore, Joseph counts as his only heir, or “son.” They make the case that since Mary was a woman, she would not have been included in this genealogy. But if that’s the case, why does Matthew’s genealogy mention Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba (listed as the “wife of…

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About M. Rodriguez

When I first received Christ salvation, I made it a priority to read the whole bible and I did. But it was the Bible that made me question my faith. For I found it flawed and lacking. Due to this I launched a personal inquiry/investigation into my faith, and ultimately realized that the Christian God of the Bible was indeed man-made. Now I Blog about those findings and life after Christ.
This entry was posted in apologetic, apologetics, bible, bible contradictions, bible study, biblical difficulties, biblical inerrancy, carm, christ, debate, gospel of matthew, history, jesus, jesus the christ, jesus the messiah, messiah, religion and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Contradictions Part 6: Jesus’s Genealogy

  1. unkleE says:

    Hi Marcus, I think there is another option – that the genealogies are stylised or symbolic and not to be understood as fully complete and literal.

    For example, Matthew names 3 periods of time, each (he says) with 14 generations (though the number of names doesn’t quite add up to this), suggesting that he was interested in having an orderly scheme for some reason rather than including everyone (sometimes “father” can mean “ancestor” rather than literal father).

    Since I don’t believe in a literal Adam and Eve, Luke’s genealogy, which includes Adam, must also be in some senses non-literal.

    I can understand how you find this information useful in discussing with inerrantists, but it doesn’t make any difference to my belief in Jesus.

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