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How many generations were there from Abraham to Jesus?

How many generations were there from Abraham to Jesus?

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Generations from Abraham to Jesus

In Matthew’s Gospel there are 41 generations from Abraham to JesusMatthew demonstrated that there were 14 generations (see Matthew 1:17): from Abraham to David; from David to Josiah; from Josiah to Jesus. To do this, he had to ignore 3 kings in the Old Testament and have David in the preceding (as 14) and following (as 1) groups, but not so Josiah.

Luke had great men occur in multiples of 7 generations starting from Adam, with: Enoch at 7; Abraham at 21; David at 35; Jesus at 77. In Luke’s list there are therefore 56 generations from Abraham to Jesus. This required adding two people in the Old Testament list: Kainan at 13 from Adam; Admin at 28 from Adam. Whereas Matthew follows the royal line from David to Zorobabel, Luke’s focus is on common people, so follows commoners from David to Zorobabel — notice Zorobabel’s quite different paternal grandfathers in the two lists.

The Difference

Based on multiple historical sources, there are 400 years missing from most people’s calculation of the number of generations.

My trilogy Torn Between Two Worlds documents this and brings logic back into Christianity.

This is the account of Dave Cross

Matthew’s list used a list that dropped out some rather worthless kings, and by grouping them 14 at a time, served as a memory aid.

Luke’s more detailed list doesn’t drop anyone out. The book of Matthew was already available by this time. Luke spent 2 years at least in Jerusalem, which means he had access to the registry of births that were keep there. He too had access to Jesus’ family members, which seems to have included Mary. In the opening words of his Gospel, he acknowledged the work of others.

  • (Luke 1:1-4) 1 Seeing that many have undertaken to compile an account of the facts that are given full credence among us, 2 just as these were handed down to us by those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and attendants of the message, 3 I resolved also, because I have traced all things from the start with accuracy, to write them to you in logical order, most excellent Theophilus, 4 so that you may know fully the certainty of the things that you have been taught orally.

Luke’s list would be the most detailed. The 56 that Dave cited would be accurate

What is the genealogy of Mary Mother of Jesus?

What is the genealogy of Mary Mother of Jesus?

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History of Mary, Mother of Jesus

The Gospels imply that Mary was of priestly descent. An early tradition says her parents dedicated her to service in the temple when she was three. Men from priestly families (cohanim) were encouraged marriage within their own ranks. If Joseph came from the line of David, and Mary came from the family of Aaron, there would have been a neat parallelism that Jesus the Messiah had both royal and priestly ancestors.

Roman Catholic tradition denies that Mary was the mother of Jesus’ brothers and sisters. While biblical Christians do and offer it as Protestant proof against the Catholic deification of an ever-virgin married woman.

However, Roman Catholic and Islamic tradition holds the doctrine of Mary’s perpetual virginity. This means that in their biblically unsubstantiated view she could not have had children after Jesus

Mary’s biblical origin

Mary was a direct descendant of King David. This gave Jesus the right to ascend the Jewish throne, both through Mary and through adoption by his foster father, Joseph. Thus, the genealogy of Christ in Luke is actually the genealogy of Mary. 

St. John of Damascus (c. 676-749) stated that Mary’s great-grandfather Panther was a brother of Mathat, her grandfather Barpanther was Heli’s cousin, and her father Joachim was a cousin of Joseph,  Heli’s levirate son.

Difference between the versions of Mary genealogy

“Joseph was clearly the son of Jacob (Matthew 1:16). so this verse [Luke 3:23 – says “son of Heli”] should be understood to mean “son-in-law of Heli.” Thus, the genealogy of Christ in Luke is actually the genealogy of Mary, while Matthew gives that of Joseph. The word “son” is not in the original. So it would be legitimate to supply either “son” or “son-in-law” in this context. Matthew and Luke clearly record much common material. It is certain that neither one could unknowingly incorporate such a flagrant apparent mistake as the wrong genealogy in his record. The two genealogies show that both parents were descendants of David. Joseph through Solomon (Matthew 1:7-15), thus inheriting the legal right to the throne of David. Mary through Nathan (Luke 3:23-31). Her line thus carrying the seed of David, since Solomon’s line had been refused the throne because of Jechoniah’s sin”.

The Death and Burial of the Blessed Virgin Mary

The Death and Burial of the Blessed Virgin Mary

John Account of Mary as instructed by Jesus

John was deliberate in his account of Mary. Lets start the story of Mary to her death and burial

When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing beside her, he said to his mother, “Woman, here is your son.” Then he said to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his own home. (John 19:26-27)

At some point in time John made his way to Ephesus.  It was assumed by many that Mary was with him, an assumption which gave rise to the tradition that Mary died in that city. This tradition, to the best of my knowledge, dates back only to about the middle of the fourth century, whereas the tradition that Mary lived, died and was buried in Jerusalem dates back to the second or third century.

Death and burial of Mary
The Stair case to the tomb of Mary

There is both biblical and post-biblical evidence that Jerusalem was in fact the place of Mary’s death and burial.

As Luke tells us in the Acts of the Apostles,after the Ascension of Jesus the apostles…

…returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a sabbath day’s journey away. When they had entered the city, they went to the room upstairs where they were staying, Peter, and John, and James, and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James son of Alphaeus, and Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of James. All these were constantly devoting themselves to prayer, together with certain women, including Mary the mother of Jesus, as well as his brothers. (Acts 1:12-14)

Other than the eleven apostles, “Mary the mother of Jesus” is the only person named in this post-Ascension gathering of disciples, who were the first members of the Jewish Christian Church in Jerusalem. However, the bible does not provide us with any further details about the earthly life of Mary, at least not directly.

The Acts of the Apostles leaves one to infer that John remained in Jerusalem for quite some time after the Ascension, which by extension means that Mary would have remained there living in John’s home. How long did John remain in Jerusalem? Well, we know that John was in Jerusalem for the ‘Council of Jerusalem’, which convened to consider Paul’s missionary methods among the Gentiles (Acts 15:1-34). Paul mentions John’s presence in his letter to the Galatians:

[W]hen they saw that I had been entrusted with the gospel for the uncircumcised, just as Peter had been entrusted with the gospel for the circumcised…and when James and Cephas and John, who were acknowledged pillars, recognized the grace that had been given to me, they gave to Barnabas and me the right hand of fellowship, agreeing that we should go to the Gentiles and they to the circumcised. (Galatians 2:7-9)

Death and burial of Mary
The Beautiful edifice in the tomb of Mary

An edicule over Mary’s tomb

Even if we accept the traditional dating of Jesus’ birth, Mary would have been about sixty-five years old in 50 AD. Most scholars, however, date Jesus’ birth as much as seven years earlier, which would mean that Mary was more likely around seventy years old in 50 AD. In his book, Paths of the Messiah, BargilPixner suggests that John didn’t leave for Ephesus until after the Jewish revolt began in 66 AD, and therefore:

It is not very likely that the Virgin at her advanced age could have accompanied [John] to the Gentile city of Ephesus in order to die alone, far removed from her relatives. (Pixner, 404)

The source of the tradition surrounding Mary’s death and burial is a post-biblical document known as Transitus Mariae (Latin, The Crossing Over of Mary). While this has long been considered a document composed in the fourth century (which, by the way, pre-dates the Ephesus tradition) more recent studies have identified, within the document, certain theological terminology typical of early Jewish Christians. The presence of such Jewish Christian language in the document would date it to the second or third century.

According to Transitus Mariae, Mary was surrounded by “all the apostles” when she died. Therefore, Pixner concludes that Mary died around the time of the ‘Council of Jerusalem’, as this would have ensured all the apostles would have been in Jerusalem (Pixner, 404).

It is Transitus Mariae which tells us of Mary’s burial at Gethsemane. In their report, New Discoveries at the Tomb of Virgin Mary (Jerusalem: Franciscan Printing Press, 1975), B. Bagatti, M. Piccirillo and A. Prodomo point out the fact that there are various versions of Transitus Mariae, and thus there are a variety of accounts about the burial of Mary. Despite the differences between the various versions, however, they all agree that Mary was buried in a tomb at Gethsemane (Bagatti, 11-13).

Death and burial of Mary
The Stone were Mary’s body was laid after her death

The stone upon which her body was supposedly laid. The tradition says that Mary was bodily assumed into heaven on the third day (the Assumption)

In a document from 451 AD, in response to a request for the relics of the Virgin Mary, the Patriarch of Jerusalem responded with his firm belief that her relics were in the “remarkable church of the Blessed Mother of God, the Virgin Mary in the place called Gethsemane. There Mary’s body was placed in a tomb” (Bagatti, 16-17). Thus we know that there was a Byzantine church on this site at some point prior to 451 AD, which means that the site was venerated by Christians previous to the construction of the church.

From my conclusion, Blessed Virgin Mary remained in Jerusalem after the Ascension of Jesus, that she lived in the house of John until her death, and that she was buried in the tomb at Gethsemane which bears her name to this day.

Where is the mother of Jesus buried?

Where is the mother of Jesus buried?


Our Lady’s Burial

Before reaching the grotto, the litter was set down. Four of the Apostles bore the coffin in, and placed it in the hollow of the tomb. All went, one by one, into the grotto where they knelt in prayer before the holy body, honoring it and taking leave of it. Then the tomb was shut in by a wicker screen that extended from the front edge of the tomb to the top of the vaulted wall above. Before the entrance of the grotto, they made a trench which they planted so thickly with blooming flowers and bushes covered with berries that one could gain access to it only from the side, and that only by making his way through the under-wood.

    On the night following the burial, took place the bodily assumption of the Blessed Virgin into heaven. I saw on this night several of the Apostles and holy women in the little garden, praying and singing Psalms before the grotto. I saw a broad pathway of light descend from heaven and rest upon the tomb. In it were circles of glory full of angels, in the midst of whom the resplendent soul of the Blessed Virgin came floating down.

Before her went her Divine Son, the marks of His Wounds flashing with light. In the innermost circle, that which surrounded the holy soul of Mary, the angels appeared like the faces of very young children; in the second circle, they were like those of children from six to eight years old; and in the outermost, like the faces of youths, I could clearly distinguish only the face, the rest of the figure consisting of perfectly transparent light. Encircling the head of the Blessed Virgin like a crown, was a choir of blessed spirits. I know not what those present saw of all this.

But I saw that some gazed up in amazement and adoration, while others cast themselves prostrate in fright upon the earth. These apparitions, becoming more and more distinct as they approached nearer, floated over the grotto, and another pathway of light issued from it and arose to the heavenly Jerusalem. The blessed soul of Mary, floating before Jesus, penetrated through the rock and into the tomb, out of which she again arose radiant with light in her glorified body and, escorted by the entire multitude of celestial spirits, returned in triumph to the heavenly Jerusalem.

   He wept with an abundance of tears quite astonishing to behold, for he could not forgive himself for coming so late. Weeping bitterly he threw himself with Jonathan at his side on the spot upon which the blessed soul of Mary had left her body, and afterward knelt long before the altar. The Apostles, who had not interrupted their choir-chanting on account of his coming, now gathered around him, raised him up, embraced him, and set before him and his companions bread, honey, and some kind of beverage in little jugs.

After that they accompanied him with lights to the tomb. Two disciples bent the shrubbery to one side. Thomas, Eleanor, and John went in and prayed before the coffin. Then John loosened the three straps that bound it, for it rose high enough above the troughlike couch to admit of being opened. They stood the lid of the coffin on one side and, to their intense astonishment, beheld only the empty winding-sheets lying like a husk, or-shell, and in perfect order. The swathing-bands of the arms and hands lay separate, as if gently drawn off, but in perfect order. The Apostles gazed in amazement, their hands raised.