17 Dec Fri, 3rd Week of Advent (C)

12/16/2021 2:53:15 PM
Gen. 49:1-2,8-10 / Ps. 71:1-2,3-4,7-8,17 / Mt. 1:1-17 (Ps Wk III)

HolySpirit-Shalom.jpg

Today's Gospel might seem almost odd at first glance. It's a long list of genealogy, tracing the family tree of Jesus. It recounts the ancestry from Abraham, through David and finally to Jesus. The remarkable part is that it contains something not usually found in a genealogy of those times - mention of women. 

Tucked away in the rhythmic cadences of the genealogy are the names of five women: Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba and Mary, the mother of Jesus. What makes this extraordinary is that in the days in which Jesus lived and Matthew wrote this Gospel, women were not full citizens and were considered irrelevant in public affairs. 

As in many cultures until recent times, inheritance came only through the father. And yet, very deliberately, Matthew mentions these women. Why? Perhaps because, as many Scripture scholars today note, all five women had "irregular" relationships with the men with whom they bore their children. Whether a prostitute, a foreigner, a married woman whose child was conceived in adultery, or like Mary, who was pregnant with Jesus before her marriage to Joseph, all of the women had something extraordinary about their unions. And each one of them had something to do with carrying on the family line from Abraham to the Messiah. 

How wondrous that God used these women to bring about the Messiah. Each one of them was a symbol of how God uses the unexpected to carry out God's plan - the coming of the Messiah.

Lord, help us find how we are being called to be a part of Your plan of salvation. 

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(theology.org.hk)

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