Hello everybody, and welcome in to episode 180 of the Bible 2021 podcast. We are reading Luke 3 today and our focus is on Why are the Genealogies of Luke and Matthew Different + Jesus Separates the Wheat from the Chaff, the Saved People From the Unsaved. We are a daily 10 minute podcast, where we will dig in to the truth of the Word of God by reading one Bible chapter a day and discussing it. Welcome to new listeners in   Thanks for listening!  Our goal is to encourage DAILY Bible reading, so you can jump in at any time and join with us. We want to invite as many people as possible to join us in daily Bible reading, so help spread the word and share the podcast! Don’t forget about our web-page, Bible2021.com – contact page, show notes, transcript and more– Click here for our Bible 2021 reading plan\

Our first question is an apologetics kind of question. Even a cursory glance at the genealogies of Jesus in Matthew and Luke tells us that there are some noticeable differences. How can this be? Isn’t the Bible without error? Yes, it most certainly is. The Jews kept good records, especially of ancestors and births, so it is no accident that these two records are slightly different, and there is a good reason that accounts for that. We need to remember that both Luke and Matthew were written at different times, by different people – the Bible isn’t one book with many chapters, it is a collection of books written by different people. But that doesn’t mean Luke was right and Matthew wrong, or vice versa, but rather, there is a very good explanation for the different genealogies:

Luke is recording Mary’s genealogy and Matthew is recording Joseph’s. Matthew is following the line of Joseph (Jesus’ legal father), through David’s son Solomon, while Luke is following the line of Mary (Jesus’ blood relative), through David’s son Nathan. Since there was no specific Koine Greek word for “son-in-law,” Joseph was called the “son of Heli” by marriage to Mary, Heli’s daughter. Through either Mary’s or Joseph’s line, Jesus is a descendant of David and therefore eligible to be the Messiah. Tracing a genealogy through the mother’s side is unusual, but so was the virgin birth. Luke’s explanation is that Jesus was the son of Joseph, “so it was thought” Source: https://www.gotquestions.org/Jesus-genealogy.html

Let’s read our chapter, and then discuss how Jesus is going to use his winnowing fork/shovel to separate people, not wheat.

I find John’s testimony about Jesus fascinating and revealing. He says:

15 Now the people were waiting expectantly, and all of them were questioning in their hearts whether John might be the Messiah. 16 John answered them all, “I baptize you with water, but one who is more powerful than I am is coming. I am not worthy to untie the strap of his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. 17 His winnowing shovel is in his hand to clear his threshing floor and gather the wheat into his barn, but the chaff he will burn with fire that never goes out.”  Luke 3:15-17

What in the world does it mean that Jesus has a winnowing fork/shovel in his hand? Dr. Al Mohler helps us understand this farming illustration:

John the Baptist told the crowds who came to hear his preaching in the wilderness of Judea that Christ was coming with his winnowing fork in his hand. That picture might not come readily to our imaginations, but it would have been immediately known to John’s audience. At the time of the harvest a winnowing fork would be used to toss the stalks and heads of grain into the air, usually in the face of a breeze. The wheat would fall to the ground to be collected, but the chaff would blow away to be collected and burned. The Lord of the harvest will collect his grain into the barn, but the chaff will be burned with unquenchable fire.

The judgment is so clear, as is the grace. The Messiah will judge the nations and every single soul. He will separate the sheep from the goats, the wheat from the chaff. The coming judgment is horrifying. There is no allowance for annihilation here. We are warned of an unquenchable fire….

Among those born of women, none is greater than John, yet the one who is least in the kingdom is greater than he? How can this be? Such is the kingdom. The preacher of the gospel of Jesus Christ has a message infinitely greater even than the message of John and the honor of an even greater calling. We have the privilege of preaching the good news of salvation in the name of Jesus Christ. We tell of his birth in Bethlehem. We proclaim that the Word has become flesh and dwelled among us. We preach Christ crucified as our substitute for our sins and raised from the dead for our justification. We openly promise that salvation comes to any sinner who believes and repents.

But that promise both saves and condemns. The faithful preacher is like the winnowing fork in the Lord’s harvest. True gospel preaching leads to wheat collected into the barn, but also leads to chaff collected for the burning. This does not fit the expectation of a religious professional, but it is the glory of the true minister’s calling.

Source: https://albertmohler.com/2016/12/02/winnowing-fork-hand

In other words, John was pointing to the same reality Jesus pointed to in Matthew 25:

31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne.32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate them one from another, just as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on the left.34 Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. Matthew 25:31-33

And also the parable of the wheat and tares/weeds in Matthew 13 – John is warning that a separation will happen, initiated by Jesus, in the last days – those that are in Christ (the wheat, the sheep) will be separated from those who are not (the weeds, the goats.) This is a stark reality that should cause us to flee to Christ!

Bible Memory verses for the month of June: Daniel 6:23 The king was overjoyed and gave orders to take Daniel out of the den. When Daniel was brought up from the den, he was found to be unharmed, for he trusted in his God.

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