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There is clearly proclaimed a curse upon the bloodline of Jeconiah in Jeremiah 22:30  God declared that none of Jeconiah’s descendants would ever reign over Israel.

Jeremiah 22:30  Thus saith the LORD, Write ye this man [Jeconiah] childless, a man that shall not prosper in his days: for no man of his seed shall prosper, sitting upon the throne of David, and ruling any more in Judah.

Jeconiah was a wicked king and yet he is found in the genealogy of Jesus:

Mat 1:11  Josiah begot Jeconiah and his brothers about the time they were carried away to Babylon.

This raises the question:  Because the Lord declared that none of Jeconiah’s descendants would sit on the throne of David or rule in Judah, how could Jesus rightfully be the Messiah/Kingof Israel?

Genealogy in Matthew

The answer to this question begins by understanding that the genealogy in Matthew, in which Jeconiah is listed, is the genealogy from Abraham to Joseph.  Because Joseph was only the legal father of Jesus, and not his biological father, Jesus was not of the seed of Jeconiah.  Therefore, the blood curse, which would have disqualified Him as King of Judah, was not passed on to Jesus.  The genealogy in Matthew presents Jesus’ legal right as heir to the throne of David.

Genealogy in Luke

Luke records a different genealogy, beginning with Joseph and going all the way back to Adam.  This genealogy presents Jesus, in His humanity, as the Son of Man (Adam).

This raises the question, how can there be two genealogies for Joseph?  The answer has to do with inheritance laws in ancient Israel.  Tangible (property and goods) and intangible (family name and position) were passed to sons, not daughters.  However, in Numbers, an exception was made for fathers who had no son.  God granted that a father could “adopt” his daughter’s husband (with certain stipulations) to receive bequeathed assets.  Heli, who is listed as the father of Joseph was actually the father of Mary. Heli would have adopted Joseph for inheritance purposes.  Therefore, the genealogy in Luke is actually Mary’s genealogy (For more information, read: Why are There Two Different Genealogies for Jesus? and What do Zelophehad’s Daughters have to do with Christmas?).

No Blood Curse in Mary’s Genealogy

Mary was Jesus’ only human parent.  It was through her ancestors that Jesus had a birthright in the bloodline of the Tribe of Judah, the line from which all kings of Judah came.  

The genealogy of Jesus through Mary is not through Solomon, but through Nathan (the second surviving son of King David).  Jeconiah was not a descendant of Nathan.  Therefore, he was not an ancestor of Mary’s and there is no blood curse on Mary’s Son,  Jesus.

The Necessity of a Virgin Birth

The blood curse on Jeconiah requires a virgin birth.  For if Joseph had been Jesus’ biological father (that’s a hypothetical “if”), He could not have fulfilled the prophecy of being Messiah.   The virgin birth was both prophesied and fulfilled.

Isaiah 7:14  Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
Matthew 1:23  Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.
Luke 1:35  And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God.

As early as the second century, the church affirmed this very simply and clearly in The Apostle’s Creed:

“I believe … in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary….”

The Nicene Creed (325, 391 AD) further defined the implications of the virgin birth with greater clarity:

“We believe … in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of the Father before all worlds, Light of Light, very God of very God, begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father….”

In Summary

Joseph was Jesus’ earthly, adopted father.  God is Jesus’ heavenly Father.  Jesus was begotten of God, conceived by the Holy Spirit.  Mary was Jesus’ human mother, a young virgin who gave birth to the Son of God.  The blood curse upon Joseph’s line was not passed on to Jesus.  Mary’s bloodline was pure in that it was without the blemish of a curse.  Jesus by all accounts is the King of kings and Lord of lords.  Hallelujah!

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