Doug Batchelor - Fruits and Nuts in the Family Tree
You know one of the most popular websites and it's also become a billion dollar business right now is ancestry.com. It's the world's largest online collection of family history records and they got three million subscribers. There's other knock offs that do varying types of this where people can kind of track their ancestry. You know, I don't know why but as I've gotten a little older I've been a little more interested in that. About a year ago, Karen got me ancestry.com test. I was always interested because my dad said, "Yeah, we're part Indian. We're part American-Indian." And I always told everybody all my life. Yep, I even, you know, my uncle lived with the Navajos. I lived on the reservation. I used to tell 'em, Yeah, I tried to figure it out when he said it was a grandma was a Cherokee.
And so, Karen got me this DNA tests. I couldn't wait to see the results how much Indian I was and came back. Took six weeks after spitting in a bottle to get the report back. And I have no Indian at all. And my father and his brothers, they've told me all my life. I didn't make it up. You can ask Karen. She talked to my uncles. Yeah, yeah, Cherokee. 'Cause everybody says that, don't they? There's people in government that say it. Good thing I'm not running for public office, but because yeah, it came up zero. Now, it turns out I did have a little Indian from India, but that's not what I thought. I'm a hodgepodge from Europe and England, but mostly Jew. European Jew it said.
Well, our message today is about fruits and nuts and the family tree. And someone said once I shook the family tree and several nuts fell out. And I think that we all know that it seems like every family has an element of baggage, little bit of dysfunction, varying degrees of challenges. Child asks their mother, "How are people born?" So, the mother being a Christian said, "Well, Adam got married to Eve and they had babies and those babies grew up and they had babies. And eventually we came along." And the child then went to the father and he was not a believer and he said, "Well, years ago our ancestors were monkeys that went through the jungle and gradually they evolved into what we are today." Child ran back to the mom and said, "Mom, you lied to me. Dad said we came from monkeys." She said, "No, I wasn't lying. He was talking about his side of the family."
Now, I know when I first started reading through the Bible I sometimes struggled going through the genealogies. I don't know how you are but when you get to the genealogies you kind of just mumble through the names. Some of them are hard to say. I used to say is this part of the Bible inspired? Am I supposed to understand this? And you find genealogies, you'll find it you know in Genesis chapter 5. And you get Chronicles, there's quite a bit of genealogy in Chronicles. You might be interested to know that the chronicles are written with a very specific purpose and it's actually very valuable. First of all, if you look in 1 Chronicles chapter 1, it's tracing the genealogy all the way from Adam up to King David. It's the royal genealogy. It's the genealogy of the king. But then if you go to first chronicles chapter 6, it's got a different genealogy, it goes from Levi and it's the genealogy of the priests.
I think it's interesting they were careful to separate the king and the priest. The church and the state. They were separate genealogies. There was a civil calendar. There was a religious calendar. And you may know that one reason God I think blessed America, we're that lamb with two horns, because we had a separation of church and state. Doesn't mean that the state is not informed by the church and the church is not informed by the laws of the land, but we kept them two distinct things. Where you find that in the Bible? But you also as you read through the genealogies of the kings, you find some interesting characters. Some were good, some were not so good, some were terrible. And even among the priests, you got Nadab, and Abihu, and Phinehas.
So, the Bible gives a very faithful record and even in those family trees they had a few fruits and nuts. But if you look at the family tree of Jesus, you're going to find out he has an interesting family tree. Some of you open up your New Testament and you get bored right away. The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. Abraham begot Isaac, Isaac begot Jacob, Jacob begot Judah. Now, right there I haven't gone very far. Abraham who had an affair with his wife's maid with the encouragement of his wife, beget Isaac who played favorites with his two sons. Who beget Jacob who dressed up like a sheep so he could deceive his father and work with his mother as a conspirator to steal the birthright. And he then had Judah, who slept with his daughter-in-law and ended up having twins because he didn't want to give his sons to her.
Now, I haven't gone very far in Jesus's family tree, but something I'm noticing right away is they had a little dysfunction going on and yet these are the holy ancestors of Jesus. Now, they were godly people. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. But you read in their lives and in spite of their commitment to God and loving the Lord, they seem very human. And you can just keep on going down and all you could talk about Rahab, who she had a cottage business you might say. And then you've got David and we've heard ad nauseam about David's lying, and deception, and murder, and yet he's an ancestor of Jesus.
So, we're learning that God's family is made up of imperfect people that God made perfect through the plan of salvation. And it's not just here in Matthew. When you look at the genealogy of Jesus, you can see that there's something very interesting happening. In Matthew, you've got that genealogy. Matthew's genealogy is the line of Jesus written for the Jews that leads to the father that was very important, leads to Joseph the father. Luke a physician said, "Well, technically Jesus was conceived of the Holy Spirit. So we got to trace the bloodline through the mother." So, Luke's bloodline is written for the Gentiles and it goes through the mother. And you know he takes it all the way back. It doesn't just go to Abraham, it says the son of Nathan, the son of David, the son of Jesse, the son of Obed, the son of Boaz, the son of Salmon, and you keep on going back as the son of Enosh, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God. They follow the same geology until you get to David and then Luke now follows from David to Mary going through Mary's father-in-law, rather Joseph's father-in-law, Mary's dad, and then Matthew was following it from David to Joseph because that would be the important lines.
People have wondered why there are two different genealogies. There was a reason for that just like I showed you there was a genealogy for the king and the priest. Luke is for the Gentiles, Matthew's for the Jews. One is going through the father. One is going through the mother. But as you read through the different characters not all of them are mentioned, but as you read through the different characters there are some really interesting stories about these people that reminds us how human they are. And the Bible is pretty clear we are all family.
All of us are family. Now, we're family because we're humans and in spite of some people to think we all descended from monkeys, the Bible's pretty clear that's not the way it happened. We are all related to Adam and Eve. And then if you think we lost track from that point, we're all related to Noah. Acts 17:26, we all have common DNA. "He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and He has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, so that they should seek the Lord and hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from every one of us."
Through the Holy Spirit, we all kind of get the DNA of Jesus transplanted, but we are all related to each other. And if you have a car accident and you need a blood transfusion the people in the hospital are going to look at the blood type, and they're not going to look and say, "Wow, I wonder are they Hispanic, or are they Anglo, or they Chinese," and they don't care. They just want to know is it - oh by the way I know what Jesus's blood type was. Called B+. So, they're just going to want to know are you O+ or whatever you are. Do you have the right blood type because now if they give you lizard blood it'll kill you. It's got to be human blood because we're all related. Just as long as it's the right blood type. Romans 5:12 problem is that through one of our ancestors we acquired a disease. "Through one man's sin," Romans 5:12, "sin entered the world and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men because all sinned." Now, that doesn't sound fair.
I was doing a little research. Do you know there are certain diseases that are particular to certain races? You've heard of sickle cell anemia. It is more prominent among African Americans, though there are some Latin Americans that get it. Cystic fibrosis is more prominent among Jews. There are several diseases that Jews principally get and you see around the world that there are certain diseases that are more kind of isolated in certain groups, partly because of their isolation. There's not enough outside genes that come in and they can get genetic deficiencies. There are certain diseases that certain breeds of dog get because through inbreeding over years. They don't get the genetic makeup that they should initially have. And so, we because we're related to Adam, we've got a problem.
See, Adam and Eve originally were made in God's image but through sin, the DNA, the gene something was damaged. Before Adam was motivated by love and after sin the compass needle flipped around and now we're motivated by self. And every human that is born, how many have sinned? We've all got this disease. We've got a problem. Through one man's sin sin entered the world and all have sinned. Romans 5:14, "Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those who had not sinned. According to the likeness of the transgression of Adam, who is a type of Him who is to come." Death reigned. He's talking about even through the, that Old Testament time up to Moses and beyond then. So, we've all got this hereditary problem that has caused sin. And it affects us in our relationships in our home. You know a lot of the biggest disputes in the Bible, you know where they are? It's called friendly fire alias family feuds.
You'll see it in the Bible, Cain killed Abel. David's son tried to kill him. His king tried to kill him. Jesus's brothers didn't understand who he was. You can see that there's rivalry that goes on between Jacob. Esau threatened to kill Jacob. Happens in the families even in the Bible. Heard about a husband and wife celebrating 60 years and the local paper came by and they said, "That's commendable. To what do you attribute your long and happy marriage?" And the husband said, "Well, when we got married we made an agreement that I would make all of the major decisions and she would make all of the minor decisions. And wouldn't you know after 60 years of marriage, we've never had to make a major decision." So, that's how they got along.
And something else that we've noticed is that we have family resemblance. Whenever I see families traveling I always look at the kids and then I look at the parents and I try to just for my own entertainment see who looks like who. Do we tend to bear things similar to our parents, there's likenesses that happened there. Someone said the apple doesn't fall very far from the tree.
I remember hearing one time about during World War II, you know they took children out of the city because London was being bombed by the Nazis just relentless bombing. And so, many of the children were taken out into the country and put in homes to try to preserve the children because so many adults had to work in the city. They were dying from the daily bombings of the Nazis. And many of the children were separated from the parents for years and some of the parents died and they never got reunited. And there were large orphanages and there's one family that had like five children in it. After the war was over they were trying to find out if either their parents had survived. And they understood they had lost their mother, but someone had gotten word that the father was alive.
So, the son went into London to look for the father, found the father was in a hospital. He was recovering. Told the father the brothers and sisters were all okay, and he was going to bring back word, and he came back and he told his siblings, "Father's alive." Some of these kids were young. They hadn't seen their father in five years and they said, "What's he like?" And the older brother, he smiled and he said, "Well, they tell me he's the spitting image of me." When God sent Jesus into the world part of the reason Christ came was to show us what the Father's like. Amen? So, He said, "If you've seen Me, you've seen the Father." He wants us to know that He is the image of the Father.
Christ became one of us. The Bible says in Philippians 2:7, "But He made Himself of no reputation taking the form of a bondservant and coming in the likeness of men." If God had come through Jesus with all of His glory and His dazzling brightness and power we couldn't have borne it but He came so much like a man that when He was walking among man they had no idea that He was any different. Bible says, "There's no outward form or comeliness that we should desire Him." Hebrews 4:15, "We do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weakness, but He was in all points tempted as we are yet without sin."
So, then we read on here. In Galatians chapter 3 now it tells us that after Christ came He came to provide adoption for us. The Bible says, "For you are all children of God by faith in Jesus." We become adopted into this new family. Continuing with Romans chapter 5, verse 18, "Therefore as through one man's offense," Adam, "judgment came on all men, resulting in condemnation." because we all sinned, "Even so through one man's righteous act," Jesus coming, his dying on the cross, "The free gift, the cure came to all men, resulting in justification of life." The sin of Adam resulted in death. The sacrifice of Jesus offers us life.
Now, I just want to pause right here and emphasize a point. How many of you believe that because of the fall of Adam that you're having problems today? Is that real to you? Do you struggle with sin? I don't see too many hands going up and I see your heads nodding. You're just, is it real? You really know that because of what happened to Adam it affects my life today. I know it. Yeah. It's like Paul said, we struggle with this nature inside. The sacrifice of Jesus liberating you from that disease is just as real through faith. This is what Paul is saying and when you catch this, friends, this is the message of righteousness by faith.
Through the sin of Adam we've all got big problems. We're tempted, we fall, we sin, sin brings all kinds of misery in its wake, but through the sacrifice and the victory of Jesus, we can be born again, adopted into a new family that has life instead of death. Through Adam there's a death penalty, through life there, through Jesus there is life that comes. That's good news. You know this is the story of the gospel. It says in Romans 8:14, "For as many as are led by the Spirit, these are the sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, 'Abba, Father.' The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God."
And I know you might think well, aren't we all children of God? No, Jesus said to some of the religious leaders, "You're of your father the devil." Not everyone is a child of God. I mean, we're all children of God in that He loves everybody, but you're not adopted into the family unless you're born again in the family. It says, "By which we cry, 'Abba, Father,' the Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ." What is an heir? An heir is someone that inherits.
You know, I remember reading about a couple of boys that were registering at a new school one day. They were about seven years old and the teacher was writing down their names. They were brothers and she asked their birthdays. One said, "I was born April 7." The other one said, "I'm born April 21." He said, "Wait a second. I've heard of twins that were born on different days, you know, within a few hours, but you guys can't be twins. You don't look like twins." And she said, "How can this be?" And they said, "We're adopted." And the teacher without thinking she said, "Just curious, which one?" And they said, "We don't know. Dad says he loves us both and he can't remember." So, when we're adopted into the family, God looks upon us with the same love as His Son.
What he said to Jesus at His baptism, "This is My beloved Son in whom I'm well pleased." He says that to us. "To Timothy, my own son in the faith." What's the language of the apostles? It's the language of a family. Matthew 12:46 through 50, while Christ was talking to the multitudes His mother and His brothers stood outside seeking to speak with Him. And they said, "Look, you know, we're family. We have priority. Tell these people we want to talk to You. Get over here right now." "And Jesus said to him the one who beckoned Him, 'Look, your mother and your brother,' they said, 'are standing outside.' He answered and said, 'Who is My mother and who are My brothers?' He stretched out His hand towards His disciples. He said, 'For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven they are My brother and My sister and My mother.'"
When you're adopted into His family it's because we obey a different constitution. We want to follow His Word. Now, what do we get? Are there any benefits of being adopted and being part of His family? Peter asked what we all think. Peter began to say, "Lord, we've left everything to follow You, what will we have?" And Jesus answered and said, "Assuredly, I say to you there is no one who has left house, or brothers, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands."
Sometimes when a person made a decision to be a Christian, they were alienated from their family. They were shunned. And if you are a Jew and you accepted Christ after that great persecution arose you could lose your property. You realize one reason the genealogies are in the Bible is because property was held by families. You were not supposed to take your inheritance of your land sell it to another tribe. You read the story of Naboth's vineyard, the King Ahab said to Naboth, "I'd like to have your property." Says, "I can't the law says it's my family's." You couldn't lose your family inheritance. So, the genealogy really was a deed and your genealogy in Christ gives you an inheritance to a land doesn't it? "You'll receive hundredfold more, a hundred times more now in this time, houses, and brothers, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands with persecutions," he puts in, "and in the age to come eternal life." And God promises to pull His family together near the end.
Some of you are praying for loved ones. Some of us got kids and they do, and all of us are very proud of our kids until they act foolish and then we don't believe in heredity anymore. But we all have kids we're praying for. The Bible says, "I will say to the north," Isaiah 43:6, "'Give them up' and to the south, 'Do not keep them back. Bring my sons from afar and my daughters from the ends of the earth. Everyone who is called by My name who I have created for My glory.'" God says that He will save thy children. You know, in Christ, we are all blessed with the blessings that God gave Abraham. You know God told Abraham in Genesis 12, I will bless those who bless you and I will curse him, who curses you. And in you, in your seed, in your families, all the Earth will be blessed.
And then you jump to the New Testament. That's Genesis, Old Testament, go to the G in the New Testament. That's Galatians. It says, If you are Christ's then you are Abraham's seed and heirs. You are adopted into the family and you are an heir, what's an heir get? An inheritance and you are heirs according to the promise. All the blessings that God made and promised to Abraham belong to you. He promised him a city not made with man's hands, didn't he? He promised them a place in the Promised Land. "Though your sins be as scarlet, They will be white as snow; Though they be red like crimson, They will be like wool."
Who was it Billy Graham, or it was Billy Sunday used to say, "I don't know, how a black cow eats green grass and makes yellow butter and white milk, but I believe it." And Jesus is telling us that He's offering us the antidote. Now, when we come to Christ through faith, and we believe in His sacrifice, the Bible says that you can be born again. You are adopted. You are washed in the blood and you are part of the family in heaven. And I'm so glad that we have a family here and you know even in our family, we know we've got some fruits and nuts in the family tree, amen? But we're family. Did the disciples sometimes argue among themselves who was the greatest but when they put aside their differences God poured out the spirit and they changed the world.