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Short question to the (catholic) christians or anyone knowing this kind of stuff: Jesus is seen as descendant of David and Abraham (gospel of matthew, chapter 1). The lineage described there is Josefs though. Now this guy had a little weird place in the story since he is hardly involved in the immaculate conception of Mary. So how is Jesus actually related to David and Abraham?
I do understand that it is probably there for reasons of legitimization and also that it probably is a difficult topic since none of the other gospels puts the list of ancestors in such a prominent place. Is Mary maybe the key and she's tying in with that lineage as well?
It's not so much in a literal sense that we look at descendants and family trees today.
Jesus' followers would have wanted to portray him as a great patriarch, part of the same lineage as Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. While all Israelites claimed descent from Abraham, that alone would hardly be worth mentioning in the bible. It would have been taken for granted that Jesus were descended from Abraham in that sense. Biblical claims were meant to show direct descent as a patriarch, and community leader. Jesus followers would have also wanted to depict him as law giver, successor to the tradition of David, Solomon, and Josiah. The collapse of the northern kingdom was ancient history by the time Jesus lived, the ten tribes of Israel had already been lost. The messiah could only have come from the tribe of Judah, because they were all that remained. The tribe of Benjamen were very small, little more than Judean vassals. By Jesus times claiming the messiah could only come from the tribe of Judah would have been redundant.
During the early Imperial period, Jesus would merely have been one of many itinerant preachers to claiming to be messiah. To cement those claims, he and his followers would assert direct descent from the great patriarchs. While people of that time might not have taken this literally (some certainly would), a literal claim would best established the message that he was direct successor to the social, religious, and temporal authority of Abraham and David. The only valid way to claim inheritance would be from father to son, therefore claims to be descended from Abraham and David would have been literal, not merely figurative gestures, even if not entirely plausible to all the people of his time.
Jesus ancestry was traced through Joseph for the same reason we of European descent take our fathers family name. Roman society was strictly patriarchal, title and social status passed from father to son. Women could not even inherit property, let alone pass it to children. Greek society would have been the same. The thought of tracing Jesus matriarchal heritage would have been preposterous to citizens of the Roman Empire. If Jesus was descended from Abraham and David through Mary, it would have mattered little to the people of his time. As a descendant of the matriarchal line, Jesus could not have claimed to be their inheritor.
Last edited by Kaiten; December 08, 2012 at 12:11 PM.
So the genetically true version of connecting Jesus to Abraham and David is not possible in this context. How then is it possible? The bible emphasises the immaculate conception and Josefs not-role in that so much after all, that the whole construction seems obsolete.
How would Jesus be genetically traced when he has no genes of both his Mother(Mary) or his guardian(Joseph)? I mean he was created by God, the whole Annunciation thing is purely understood in a religious and divine way. Now, the true figure that links the New and Old testaments together is John the Baptist I think, his father appears in both I think?
But there are a lot of prophecies in the old that link it to the new, like the visions of the prophets of Mary.
The issue is we're talking about genetics. There was no such thing as genetics back when the Bible was written, so taking it into account when talking in terms of what is in the scripture is pretty pointless.
Well, by mentioning "genetically" I don't mean he went to a doctor and got proven with a probability of 99.9% not to be the father. It's just another way to say "related by blood" for me.
As for the problem, other than the legitimation for little Jesus to be the savior I had mentioned in my initial post, I don't see how it goes together. Guess it's true what I recently heard and people never took the book that literal until recent times and saw through those moves and accepted them?
As for the connection between old and new, it is indeed striking how often at least in the first chapters of the gospel of mathew these prophecies are mentioned, that Jesus fulfills. Then again, that's the same reason as drawing a genealogical lineage to Adam, Abraham, Noah and David, as he wasn't the first and hence neither the only salvation figure around how John the Baptist shows. The latter was aware of the other (i.e. Jesus) that was to come though, according to the Bible.
Jesus is a prophet, but also a Savior, that is the thing with Christianity, a lot is left into a metaphorical, abstract meaning, primarily due to the religion begin so different from the general ancient othological thought of the early philosophers that believed that matter always existed but re-arranged it-self into the world later. In Christianity a prime mover sets everything in motion, a mover that senses can not grasp. I do still think science is re-affirming the complexity of what God created. And that is how I believe our world is set up, as Kafka famously said : God gives the nuts, but he does not crack them.
That's actually quite an interesting point, since it is not an exclusive/original concept invented by Christianity, but the mixture of Aristotele's unmoved mover, in short a helenistic concept, and the cutural/spiritual context in the levante back then with a whole bunch of self acclaimed messiahs roaming the land - probably due to the roman occupation back then? In any case, from this angle it's no wonder that the greek speaking half of the roman empire still sticks to the original more or less, even though the split actually had other, more profane reasons, iirc.
What we do believe in is that Allah(GOD) sent prophets and they had their message to call people to righteousness but none of their messages were preserved for 2 main condition:
1) it was meant for a particular period
2) it was meant for a particular score of people ie not universal
So it wasnt really impending on God to preserve it text by text ofcourse Gods word would be preserved by successive revelation from newer prophets. Since he will get his message/inspiration from God he will know which part is human addition and which part is Gods inspiration.
Only the Quran is different as it is for all the time from its revelation and its not meant for a particular set of people so there is no concept of gentiles in Islam which you might find in judiasm since its meant for all. Or there is no concept of a comforter to come later after the prophet departs who will guide to all truth since we believe the message will be protected by God hence intact so no fresh revelation required.
Didnt mean to demean any religion in my post i was just trying to put forward some rudimentary belief of Islam I sincerely apologize if any Jews or christian felt offended by my post.
Btw...have you heard about Apollonius of Tyana??
So you find yourself chasing a circle and getting no where.
Personally, I agree with this notion that history will be written by the victors / winners.
Be it "winners," "conquerors," and "victors"... I think this can also be called 'true-ism'. Slightly off topic but this phrase also was used by George Bush when asked of what the historian will think of him. I cant cite the source but from memory he also said something similar.
While you can argue that the looser or a third party will or can do write one but generally in wartime, this is not the case. Sorry to be getting of topic there -
Now back to religion -
Also something that Ancy linked to is also similar to the Egyptian myth. similar names, events / miracles and or events.