HARLOTS AND PUBLICANS

How comforting is the Lord’s mercy! ❤️

Matthew Chapter 1

JFB Bible Commentary:

This feature in the present genealogy – herein differing from that given by Luke – comes well from him who styles himself in his list of the Twelve, what none of the other lists do, “Matthew the publican”;

Matthew 10: 2 Now the names of the twelve apostles are these; The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; 3 Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus; 4 Simon the Canaanite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him.

as if thereby to hold forth, at the very outset, the unsearchable riches of that grace which could not only fetch in “them that are afar off,” but reach down even to “publicans and harlots,” and raise them to “sit with the princes of his people.”

Matthew Henry Bible Commentary:

There are four women, and but four, named in this genealogy; two of them were originally strangers to the commonwealth of Israel, Rahab a Canaanitess, and a harlot besides, and Ruth the Moabitess; for in Jesus Christ there is neither Greek, nor Jew; those that are strangers and foreigners are welcome, in Christ, to the citizenship of the saints.

The other two were adulteresses, Tamar and Bathsheba; which was a further mark of humiliation put upon our Lord Jesus, that not only he descended from such, but that his decent from them is particularly remarked in his genealogy, and no veil drawn over it.

He took upon him the likeness of sinful flesh (Rom 8:3), and takes even great sinners, upon their repentance, into the nearest relation to himself.

Matthew Chapter 1

1The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.

2Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judas and his brethren; 3And Judas begat Phares and Zara of Thamar; and Phares begat Esrom; and Esrom begat Aram; 4And Aram begat Aminadab; and Aminadab begat Naasson; and Naasson begat Salmon; 5And Salmon begat Booz of Rachab; and Booz begat Obed of Ruth; and Obed begat Jesse; 6And Jesse begat David the king; and David the king begat Solomon of her that had been the wife of Urias; 7And Solomon begat Roboam; and Roboam begat Abia; and Abia begat Asa; 8And Asa begat Josaphat; and Josaphat begat Joram; and Joram begat Ozias; 9And Ozias begat Joatham; and Joatham begat Achaz; and Achaz begat Ezekias; 10And Ezekias begat Manasses; and Manasses begat Amon; and Amon begat Josias; 11And Josias begat Jechonias and his brethren, about the time they were carried away to Babylon:

12And after they were brought to Babylon, Jechonias begat Salathiel; and Salathiel begat Zorobabel; 13And Zorobabel begat Abiud; and Abiud begat Eliakim; and Eliakim begat Azor; 14And Azor begat Sadoc; and Sadoc begat Achim; and Achim begat Eliud; 15And Eliud begat Eleazar; and Eleazar begat Matthan; and Matthan begat Jacob; 16And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ.

17So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David until the carrying away into Babylon are fourteen generations; and from the carrying away into Babylon unto Christ are fourteen generations.

harlots and publicans

SUDDEN DEATH

I wrote the following post in 2007 under a different title. I wrote the poem in 2016.

Another Sunday and another Sunday service at the nursing home. I was blessed, edified, and saddened all at the same time. What a blessing to be part of the residents’ lives. To be able to encourage the saints and to be encouraged by them. They just continue to shine in their hour of trial! Then there’s the joy of sharing the good news of the Gospel with those who have not been born again. But there’s also sadness for those who don’t know the Lord. I wonder, will they ever come to know Him?

Much was said yesterday, even before the service began, about the brevity of life and, at times, the suddenness of death. Life itself can be an illustrated bible study…

An elderly woman walked into the lounge where my father was eating lunch. She had come to visit one of the residents. We began to talk, as often happens when visitors gather in the lounge. She told me that many years ago she bought a house and moved in on a Saturday. Her mother was so excited and was telling everyone that her daughter had just bought a new house. Plans were made for her mother to come and spend a whole month in the new house with her. But by Monday morning her mother was dead. She died in her sleep. Her mother was only 58 years old at the time. As she spoke she looked as if she would cry. She said we should thank God every morning when we wake up, that He has given us another day to live. She said that on the Saturday that she moved into her new house she felt inexplicably sad. So much so that someone commented on the sadness of her countenance. She told them she was sad because she felt as if she was about to be separated from someone.

Then she told of the man who sang the Lord’s prayer at her 50th wedding anniversary. She said he traveled with a group, and sang at many different places. She was planning to host a barbeque at her home after he returned from one of his trips. She and his wife made plans. But the man never made it home to enjoy the fellowship. While he was away, after singing a solo, he sat down and had a massive heart attack in his seat and died.

I’m sure many have similar tales to tell. A friend of our family went on vacation with his wife and young daughter. He went into the ocean for a swim and when he came out suffered a fatal massive heart attack, right on the beach. He was only in his mid 40’s.

And, many years ago my husband’s father, who was only in his 60’s, collapsed on the living room floor after coming home from his youngest daughter’s grammar school graduation dinner.  His daughter, my sister-in-law, was suppposed to go to Great Adventure the next day for her 8th grade class trip.  In her own words she tells what happened …

“I had gone up to bed shortly after arriving home from the dinner, and I heard my mom yelling for help. We were the only ones home at the time. I ran down the stairs expecting to find something wrong with my mother, but saw my father lying there instead. His face was black in color, and my dog was sniffing at him because he sensed something was wrong.

The ambulance arrived quickly and my mom accompanied my father as I followed in a neighbor’s car. I remember my neighbor, Peggy, telling me “Your dad is a strong man” as I gazed out the car window. Several days later, as my mom and I were standing in our kitchen, the phone rang. It was the hospital.

After hanging up the phone, my mother turned to me and said, the doctor said your father ‘expired at such-and-such a time.’ I hugged my mom and told her that everything was going to be alright. I must say, I will never forget those words ‘expired’. How cold and insensitive those words were to me.”

My husband was working close to home at the time. The night his father collapsed, he noticed an ambulance as it urgently sped by, so he prayed for the person inside. He later learned that it was his own father that was inside that ambulance. An aneurysm was the cause of his father’s sudden death.

DEATH

The crimson stain of sin.
Death, again and again.
This world, our lives, our all,
Touched and marred, by the fall.

We see it all around.
We hear the heartbreak sound.
And those who weep anew,
Remind us of this truth.

Cathy White 2016

Proverbs 27:1 Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth.

Ecclesiastes 7:2 It is better to go to the house of mourning, than to go to the house of feasting: for that is the end of all men; and the living will lay it to his heart.

1 Corinthians 15:55-57 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.