Sometimes it’s hard to get into the Christmas spirit. Our culture tends to idealize the idea of Christmas. We imagine perfectly delightful, conflict-free gatherings of extended family. We visualize giving thoughtful gifts, while receiving just what we wanted. We want all the rich traditions we associate with the season. But for many of us, the reality of Christmas is less than ideal. We might feel uncomfortable talking about sorrow and brokenness at Christmastime, but the Bible doesn’t scrub these realities from the life of Jesus—or from his family tree.
The gospel of Matthew begins by laying out a long list of names, the genealogy of Jesus Christ, five of which are the names of women. We may be tempted to skip over the list of names in Matthew 1, but through the stories of these women—Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba (Uriah’s wife), and Mary—we hear the message that Christ came into the world to offer God’s love to the broken and those who seemingly do not belong.
We at Groundwork invite you to dig deeply into the Bible with our podcast series, Christmas Hope and the Women in Jesus’ Family Tree. This five-part audio series delves into the story of each of the five women named in Jesus’ family tree. An eBook includes a discussion guide for each episode with commentary and questions for individual or group reflection.
- Christmas Hope: Tamar - Matthew 1:1-3, Genesis 38, and Romans 8:35-39
- Christmas Hope: Rahab - Matthew 1:5, Joshua 2, James 2:25-26, and Romans 5:8
- Christmas Hope: Ruth - Matthew 1:3-6, Ruth 1-4, Luke 16:10, and Micah 6:8
- Christmas Hope: Bathsheba - Matthew 1:5-7 and 2 Samuel 11:1-12:25
- Christmas Hope: Mary and Christ's Birth - Matthew 1:15-25, Galatians 4:4-7, and Ephesians 3:17b-19
I encourage you to join Groundwork hosts Scott Hoezee and Darrell Delaney to pause and consider these names. As we reflect on these stories, we’ll recall together that in Christ there is a place for the broken, the traumatized, the outsider, and the imperfect. At Christmas, we celebrate the birth of the Savior who came to confront sin, and conquer the root cause of our brokenness. Whether we feel joy or sorrow this season, Christmas is for us.
Download Christmas Hope and the Women in Jesus’ Family Tree today!