God uses all kinds of People
Preached in Quabbin Valley on 8/10/08
(Pg 117) Matthew 1:1-17 A record of the genealogy of Jesus Christ the son of David, the son of Abraham: 2 Abraham was the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers, 3 Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar, Perez the father of Hezron, Hezron the father of Ram, 4 Ram the father of Amminadab, Amminadab the father of Nahshon, Nahshon the father of Salmon, 5 Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab, Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth, Obed the father of Jesse, 6 and Jesse the father of King David. David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah's wife, 7 Solomon the father of Rehoboam, Rehoboam the father of Abijah, Abijah the father of Asa, 8 Asa the father of Jehoshaphat, Jehoshaphat the father of Jehoram, Jehoram the father of Uzziah, 9 Uzziah the father of Jotham, Jotham the father of Ahaz, Ahaz the father of Hezekiah, 10 Hezekiah the father of Manasseh, Manasseh the father of Amon, Amon the father of Josiah, 11 and Josiah the father of Jeconiah and his brothers at the time of the exile to Babylon. 12 After the exile to Babylon: Jeconiah was the father of Shealtiel, Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel, 13 Zerubbabel the father of Abiud, Abiud the father of Eliakim, Eliakim the father of Azor, 14 Azor the father of Zadok, Zadok the father of Akim, Akim the father of Eliud, 15 Eliud the father of Eleazar, Eleazar the father of Matthan, Matthan the father of Jacob, 16 and Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ. 17 Thus there were fourteen generations in all from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the exile to Babylon, and fourteen from the exile to the Christ.
What an inspiring and amazing portion of scripture, makes you want to fall asleep, kind of boring. This is the kind of reading you want to do when you’re not able to fall asleep at night, don’t take sleeping pills read Matthew 1:1-17.
But really when you read this text what jumps out at you? The first things you you might notice are all the well known people mentioned like Abraham the father of faith and one who is said to be the friend of God, Also King David who was said to be a man after God’s own heart, and Solomon who was the wisest man alive.
But after you look over this section of scripture again what do you notice? I see all kinds of people here with weird names and I have no clue who they were, a lot of nobodies. What else do you notice? How about the major sinners, we have liars, murderers, adultery, and even a gentile prostitute named Rahab.
Do you want to know what I find interesting? We have people from all walks of life, Rich kings and rulers, to lowly carpenters and shepherds, famous people and the infamous, prostitutes and princes, people who are well known some bodies and the nobodies. Every person in this list was used by God to bring the Messiah into the world, God used them in other ways I’m sure but we know he used them to do this most wonderful thing. Have you ever really thought about that? God could have worked it out so that only Kings and Queens, the rich and the powerful and the most holy and righteous were in the lineage of the Christ but he didn’t. God used all kinds of people and God still uses all kinds of people. If God can use all these different types of people to bring the Messiah into the world what can he do with you?
We have at least two things in common with every person on this list.
a) Every person on this list was a sinner, from the kings to the prostitute.
b) Everyone was used by God to bring glory to him and to bring salvation to the world.
We are all sinners no matter where on the scale you place yourself, king or poor servant, if you have money or not, or whether you think you are special or not. Paul says
Romans 3:23 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
We sometimes fail to be as faithful as we would like and as faithful as God would have us but God will use us for his glory. And you know what? God has been using you for his glory all along.
Think about this, it wasn’t only to bring the Messiah into the world that God used all types of people but who did he use to preach the Gospel at first? Fishermen, zealots, who were religious fanatics, tax collectors who were viewed as traitors to Israel and who the zealots would have wanted to kill, Pharisees like Nicodemus and Paul, and every other type of person you can imagine. Rich, poor, smart and not so smart.
Do you count yourself the lowest of the low or the highest of the high or something in the middle, none of that matters to God, he can and will use you.
(Remember that we can look and see even the most faithful people often stumbled and sinned in ways that we might consider terrible)
We don’t compare ourselves to each other. We all come to the cross equal. There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, all are one in Christ. We sit down before the supper as brethren, a family, and no one is greater or lesser in this family. We don’t all function the same way but we are all being used by God to glorify Christ.
When we all sit down at the table in heaven and we are told about how God used us to bring Christ to this world I doubt we will have any clue as to the things God has accomplished through us. Do you think Rahab the prostitute has any idea that she would be used to bring in the Messiah? I don’t think she had a clue.
You stick close to Christ and you by faith live for Christ and don’t worry about what others are saying or doing because God is using you to do things that have eternal consequences not only today but in the future and don’t allow self doubt and Satan to try and limit you. God is working in you, through you, for you and for the salvation of this world.