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Family Trees; A Sunday message from Pastor Donnie

Luke 3:22-38

1. How do you start?

2. How do you finish?

23 Now Jesus Himself began His ministry at about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, the son of Heli,

1. How do you start?

How did Jesus start?

*By being filled in the Holy Spirit

*His ministry was began by being filled with Holy spirit.

What a joy to be filled with the Spirit.

What a humble way to start.

Our King, being perfect, would not need to be baptized.

Remember John’s baptism was baptism for the Repentance of Sins.

Sin is what we do.

The Godman, Jesus lived a perfect sinless life and walked on this earth.

He submitted himself to being water baptized…

and then the blessed promise of the Holy Spirit descended on Him with power.

Power- to start a ministry.

Power to do the greatest 3 years of life ever known to man.

3 years of training men to change the world.

3 years of pouring into men that would give us books of the Bible

and save one, all these men would die martyrs.

So much rich truth here -

You can start anything in the flesh for sure.

Many things are started and God lets them start.

Looking back on things, the ministry of Jeremiah…

40 years without a single convert,

one could say, “what a work of the flesh”,

No way Jose! There are so many verses and accounts that minister still to this day.

How about

Jeremiah 29:11-13

11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. 12 Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13 And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

I think for me to remember how we started.

Did you do something in your flesh or did you do it for God’s glory?

And did you do it in God’s timing?

That’s a question for the ages.

Do you want Jesus to be a point of interest on your map? Or is He the Whole map of your life?

Being sent out to church plant and starting in the Spirit should be the real focus of anyone who teaches and is a leader of God’s church. Many people can be critical, I have done it myself, it’s those times I remember my King and how he started.

He Started in the Spirit.

Don’t forget how important it is to start well!

Do you also know that the words “HIS Ministry” as we see in verse 23 don’t exist in the Greek?

They might be in italics in your Bible.

Why is that important? Because it was the Lord’s calling to do this once He was baptized.

Here are 2 other verses to support this;

Acts 1:21-22 “Therefore it is necessary that of the men who have accompanied us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us– beginning with the baptism of John until the day that He was taken up from us–one of these must become a witness with us of His resurrection.”

Acts 10:37-38 you yourselves know the thing which took place throughout all Judea, starting from Galilee, after the baptism which John proclaimed. You know of Jesus of Nazareth, how God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and with power, and how He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.

The baptism of water and the power came forward into his 3 years of doing the work…

The work of sharing, caring, and discipling 12 men who would change the world.

Did you know that you can do ministry without power?

You can, you can do a lot in your flesh or in your mental ability and giftings that God has given you.

Don’t do it.

Pray and ask for the Holy Spirit to lead and guide you.

If we had not done this, ReFresh Church would not exist.

I have been praying personally for about 5-6 years.

If you have a calling to be a church planter, start praying about it like you have never prayed before.

Believe it.

This is God’s work; a work and walk of grace that He has done with us.

One more little tid bit to consider.

Did you see how old Jesus was?

Look at the people who start at 30.

Ezekiel began his ministry at 30

 Joseph was also 30 "when he stood before Pharaoh, king of Egypt

 "David was thirty years old when he became king, and he reigned forty years

Thirty was also the age at which the priests began to serve,

Moses recording "from thirty years and upward, even to fifty years old, all who enter the service to do the work in the tent of meeting."

One possible reason why Jesus started his Ministry at 30 is because it would be more acceptable to the Jewish culture.

I don’t see a need for people to wait to be Pastors.

Having a team around young pastors always helps.

Life has a simple way, when walking with Christ, to be the greatest tutor most of us need.

As we start the genealogy,

Do you see how the good Dr. Luke starts this?

He starts by saying Joseph is the supposed father.

This is not a slap in his face,

Joseph did his earthly and Godly duty to raise Jesus as his own.

A step dad if you will…

I don’t think enough credit is given to what Joseph did.

He raised the child of God.

It was a super big deal.

He also was such a Godly man.

He raised this child without it being his.

Joseph is the greatest example of step parent.

I am hopeful, that if life leads you down this path someday, that you would remember that Jesus our Savior, had a step parent. A good one at that.

So, as we start this genealogy, most folks don’t really know their ancestors.

I will confess, I did one of those ancestry DNA tests.

It ended up being correct on one side and the other side was not so clear.

It was interesting to say the least.

Our genealogy in Christ leads us to heaven.

For us to understand why, we need to dig a bit deeper.

Why record this lineage and let us know?

So, let me give you a few reasons why there would be a genealogy record and why Dr. Luke and Matthew both have them written in their books.

To the Jews, genealogies were critical.  

(1) Ancestry determined one's claim on land. 

Where tribes and families started

(2) Ancestry determined claims to the right of inheritance.

Family line had to prove it.

There’s a movie called “There Will Be Blood”.

It’s an interesting account of an oil tycoon (a savage).

He ends up fighting with the local pastor.

This man ends up getting lied to/swindled by a man who says he was a brother from another mother. (he couldn’t provide documents to prove it)

All the dots add up and the t’s crossed from what he said, however…

The Tycoon asked a critical question that revealed the lie.

He asked a question about the land and where he said he was from.

It revealed the lie to him.

Now, we could google properties and go to our county assessor’s office for information.

That was not the case before the internet.

(3) Ancestry established the basis of taxation

That's why when Joseph and Mary went to be taxed they went to Bethlehem

They were of the house and line of David. 

And that was the birthplace of that family

That's where they went because that's where their genealogical records were kept.

(4) Any claim to the priesthood had to be verified by genealogy. 

(5) Any claim to royalty, any claim to being king, Messiah,

to be king, one had to have lineage directly from the great king who was David himself. 

So, if you claimed a royal pedigree, you had to prove it by your genealogy.

Interesting isn’t it?

So, when you’re reading Chronicles (or any other book in the bible with genealogy) know that there is reason. It’s not to bore you.

There are some interesting people here.

Most conservative Bible scholars today take this view;

Luke is recording Mary’s genealogy and Matthew is recording Joseph’s.

Matthew is following the line of Joseph (Jesus’ legal father), through David’s son Solomon,

While Luke is following the line of Mary (Jesus’ blood relative), through David’s son Nathan.

Since there was no Greek word for “son-in-law,” Joseph was called the “son of Heli” by marriage to Mary, Heli’s daughter.

Through either Mary’s or Joseph’s line, Jesus is a descendant of David-therefore eligible to be the Messiah.

Tracing genealogy through the mother’s side (matrilineal- as most Native American populations do) is unusual, but so was the virgin birth.

Luke’s explanation is that Jesus was the son of Joseph, “so it was thought as noted in the first verse.

Let’s get to this list of names:

24 the son of Mattha, the son of Levi, the son of Mel chi, the son of Janna, the son of Joseph, 25 the son of Mattathias, the son of Amos, the son of Nahum, the son of Eli, the son of Ngai, 26 the son of Maath, the son of Mattathias, the son of Semei, the son of Joseph, the son of Judah, 27 the son of Joanna’s, the son of Rheas, the son of Zerubbabel, the son of Shealtiel, the son of Neri, 28 the son of Melchi, the son of Addi, the son of Cosam, the son of Elmodam, the son of Er, 29 the son of Jose, the son of Eliezer, the son of Jorim, the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, 30 the son of Simeon, the son of Judah, the son of Joseph, the son of Jonan, the son of Eliakim, 31 the son of Melea, the son of Menan, the son of Mattathah, the son of Nathan, the son of David, 32 the son of Jesse, the son of Obed, the son of Boaz, the son of Salmon, the son of Nahshon, 33 the son of Amminadab, the son of Ram, the son of Hezron, the son of Perez, the son of Judah, 34 the son of Jacob, the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham, the son of Terah, the son of Nahor, 35 the son of Serug, the son of Reu, the son of Peleg, the son of Eber, the son of Shelah, 36 the son of Cainan, the son of Arphaxad, the son of Shem, the son of Noah, the son of Lamech, 37 the son of Methuselah, the son of Enoch, the son of Jared, the son of Mahalalel, the son of Cainan, 38 the son of Enosh, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.

How do you finish?

All these people share in the DNA of the King of Kings and our Savior, Jesus.

There are a lot of people who dealt with trials and troubles.

Not all these people are of “special status” to bring the Savior into the world.

Ruth became part of Jesus line via Boaz.

You remember the story of Ruth and how she clung to her mother-in-law and loved her family via her husband.

Her husband who passed.

She was sad and really loved Naomi- (her mother-in-law).

She went back with Naomi to the land of her father.

From that story of love and grace, we see how God honored that suffering and brought Boaz into the picture.

Boaz is in the line of our King.

Boaz was a good man.

What a story of grace and beauty that buried and hurt being restored.

Homework, read Ruth this week.

Methuselah was the longest known human to ever live- 969 years.

I would imagine he had some things happen to him.

Imagine having a conversation with him in modern times.

Think about someone having almost 1000 years of time under their belt and the things that they would have seen and remembered.

Many things to think about.

1. GOD IS SOVEREIGN OVER HISTORY; WE CAN TRUST THAT HIS PURPOSES WILL BE FULFILLED.

2. GOD’S TIMING IS NOT OUR TIMING; WE MUST LEARN TO WAIT ON HIM

3.GOD DOESN’T ALWAYS WORK IN OUR LIFETIME, OUR HOPE MUST BE IN HIS PROMISE THROUGH CHRIST OF LIFE AFTER DEATH.

Again, that brings us back to how do we finish.

Every test is part of your testimony

Every mess is part of your message.

We are all getting sour things in life to make sweet lemonade.

We all have people in our family trees and maybe some crazy uncles and misunderstanding aunts.

Jesus had some people in his family tree. We all do.

You were given YOUR life!

It doesn’t matter how great your parents are…that doesn’t automatically mean you will be great.

And on the flip side, you are not damned because your parent’s make poor decisions.

God wants the best for you!

We see that God had a plan for each person in Jesus’ lineage- so too does He have a plan for you!

As we quoted Jeremiah 29:11 earlier:

“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not evil, to give you a future and a hope”

Don’t forget- it’s all about what God wants to do with YOU!

How do start and how do we finish?

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