Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (Mt 1:2-1:2)

“Abraham was

The father of Isaac.

Isaac was

The father of Jacob.

Jacob was

The father of Judah

And his brothers.”

 

Ἀβραὰμ ἐγέννησεν τὸν Ἰσαάκ, Ἰσαὰκ δὲ ἐγέννησεν τὸν Ἰακώβ, Ἰακὼβ δὲ ἐγέννησεν τὸν Ἰούδαν καὶ τοὺς ἀδελφοὺς αὐτοῦ,

 

Throughout the Old Testament writings, especially the Torah, there was a continual reference to the God of Abraham (Ἀβραὰμ), Isaac (Ἰσαάκ), and Jacob (Ἰακώβ).  This Greek text used the term ‘begat’ (ἐγέννησεν) to represent the relationships between these 3 men.  However, it seems perfectly acceptable to simply call them the father instead of saying “fathered them.”  These three generations were key to Hebrew and Jewish history.  Their stories can be found in the book of Genesis, chapters 12-35.  Remember that Abraham had a son with his wife’s maid, Hagar, who was called Ishmael, who were both sent away.  Jacob had a twin brother named Esau, whom he tricked out of his father’s inheritance.  Of even more interest is the fact that instead of the 12 tribes or sons of Jacob, there is only a mention of Judah (Ἰούδαν) and then his brothers (τοὺς ἀδελφοὺς αὐτοῦ).  Clearly, Judah had become the dominant tribe by the time of this writing, during the time of Jesus.  For purposes of this genealogy, Judah would be a pivotal figure.

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