Bible contradictions #05: Jesus’ genealogies


The New Testament provides two genealogies of Jesus, one in Matthew and one in Luke.  Matthew’s genealogy begins with Abraham and moves forward in time:  “A was the father of B, B the father of C,” and so on.  Luke’s genealogy begins with Jesus and moves backwards in time all the way to Adam:  “C the son of B, the son of A.”

Let’s compare only the portions from Abraham forward.

From Matthew 1

Abraham
Isaac
Jacob
Judah
Perez
Hezron
Aram

Aminadab
Nahshon
Salmon
Boaz
Obed
Jesse
David
Solomon
Rehoboam
Abijah
Asaph
Jehoshaphat
Joram
Uzziah
Jotham
Ahaz
Hezekiah
Manasseh
Amos
Josiah
Jechoniah
Salathiel
Zerubbabel
Abiud
Eliakim
Azor
Zadok
Achim
Eliud
Eleazar
Matthan
Jacob
Joseph
Jesus

From Luke 3

Abraham
Isaac
Jacob
Judah
Perez
Hezron
Arni
Admin
Amminadab
Nahshon
Sala
Boaz
Obed
Jesse
David
Nathan
Mattatha
Menna
Melea
Eliakim
Jonam
Joseph
Judah
Simeon
Levi
Matthat
Jorim
Eliezer
Joshua
Er
Elmadam
Cosam
Addi
Melchi
Neri
Shealtiel
Zerubbabel
Rhesa
Joanan
Joda
Josech
Semein
Mattathias
Maath
Naggai
Esli
Nahum
Amos
Mattathias
Joseph
Jannai
Melchi
Levi
Matthat
Heli
Joseph
Jesus

The differences begin with Matthew’s saying Joseph, Mary’s husband, was descended from David’s son Solomon, and Luke’s saying Joseph, Mary’s husband, was descended from David’s other son Nathan. There is a widespread notion that one genealogy is actually that of Mary’s husband and the other that of Mary herself. Problem: The text doesn’t say that.

Another issue is that Matthew’s list does not comport with the Old Testament.  See Matthew’s Omission of 81 Years of Jewish Kings.

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