● A careful comparison of Matthew 1:1-16 with Luke 3:23-38 shows that Matthew gave the lineage of Jesus Christ through Solomon, whereas Luke gave it through Nathan, another son of David. Why, then, do both genealogies list Shealtiel and Zerubbabel?—M. K., Alaska.
It was evidently through a marriage that the family line leading to Jesus from King David through his son Nathan merged with the line through Solomon after many generations.
First Chronicles 3:16-18 shows that Shealtiel was the fleshly son of Jeconiah (King Jehoiachin). With this Matthew agrees, in stating: “After the deportation to Babylon Jeconiah became father to Shealtiel.” (Matt. 1:12) However, Luke did not err in indicating that Shealtiel was “the son of Neri.” (Luke 3:27) Apparently this was true, because Neri gave his daughter to Shealtiel in marriage. Since it was not uncommon for the Hebrews to refer to a son-in-law as a son, and especially so in genealogical listings, Luke could properly refer to Shealtiel as the son of Neri, just as he had already referred to Joseph as the son of Heli, who was actually the father of Joseph’s wife, Mary.—Luke 3:23.
Hence, it was through such a marital union that the family line of David through Nathan merged with the line through Solomon. This would also account for the fact that both Matthew and Luke mention Shealtiel’s son Zerubbabel. Eventually, through different descendants of Zerubbabel, the two family lines again took separate courses in leading to Jesus Christ.
With good reason, then, the book “Things in Which It Is Impossible for God to Lie” states on page 71: “Most of the Jews surviving the fall and destruction of Jerusalem were carried into exile into Babylon. Among the captive Jews there during the next seventy years was one named Neri, who had descended from King David through his son Nathan. This family line now became interrelated with Solomon’s family through Shealtiel and his son Zerubbabel.” The interrelating of these lines of descent is also shown on pages 112 and 113 of this publication.
For additional information on the genealogies of Jesus Christ as presented by Matthew and Luke, please see The Watchtower of March 1, 1962, pages 158 and 159.
Jehovah God is the Provider of a banquet for all peoples. Already men of all nations are feasting on the satisfying spiritual provisions he has made, and it is the privilege of those who do so to invite others to join them. This Jehovah’s witnesses will do during June by offering to others the New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures along with the book “Things in Which It Is Impossible for God to Lie,” and two booklets, for $1.50.
LEARN MORE FROM THE BIBLE
Home Bible reading and discussion is one of the most unifying family programs in which you can share. But even if you are the only one in your household interested in the Bible, you can still derive great benefit from a systematic, topical consideration of God’s written Word. An invaluable aid in this respect is the book “Things in Which It Is Impossible for God to Lie.” Hard bound, 416 pages of satisfying reading, with questions at the bottom of each page to stimulate your thinking and aid your memory. The progress of your study will be facilitated by the use of an easy-to-read, modern-English translation of the Bible. The New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures, bound in green vinyl, and with 1,472 pages, including Concordance, Appendix, maps and illustrations, is just such a Bible. Send $1.50 today and receive, in addition to these two bound volumes, your free copy of the timely booklet God’s Way Is Love.
“WATCHTOWER” STUDIES FOR THE WEEKS
July 10: Manifesting the Spirit of God, ¶1-19. Page 357.
July 17: Manifesting the Spirit of God, ¶20, 21, and Keep On Growing Under Jehovah’s Spirit. Page 363.