Matthew 1 traces Jesus' lineage forward from Abraham through to David. It emphasizes the great Jewish covenants and the progression of God's purpose, finally fulfilled in Jesus, who is the seed of Abraham and the king of Israel.
Here in Matthew 1 is a lengthy list of names, a list that can be very dull to read. But if we make the genealogy personal, it comes alive. Read the genealogy as though it were your own family history. It is! “For if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed (Gal 3:26-29), and heirs according to the promises” (Gal 3:16, 27-29).
When read that way, the boring list is immensely exciting. You suddenly discover that you are an heir to a vast inheritance — the whole world in fact (Gen 13:14, 15; Rom 4:13; 2 Sam 7:12-16) through an obscure branch of the family tree that you never knew about before. Just think: if you learned of this possible inheritance, with what excitement would you read and re-read that "dull", "dry" list of names, just to be sure that it did, in fact, lead finally to you? And then how eagerly and seriously would you go to work at the family's enterprise, knowing that one day it would all belong to you!
This then becomes our starting point to review the lives of the five women who are mentioned in this genealogy — Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba, and (last and most extraordinary of all) Mary, the mother of Jesus.