Jim provides us with the following observations:
I Would like to add to Jim's words above, what I read in J.C. Ryle's Expository Thoughts on Matthew 1.1-17 this afternon:
Let us thank God daily for giving us the Scriptures. The poorest Englishman who understands his Bible, knows more about religion than the wisest philosophers of Greece and Bome.
Let us remember our deep responsibility. We shall all be judged at the last day according to our light. To whomsoever much is given, of them much will be required.
Let us read our Bibles reverently and diligently, with an honest determination to believe and practise all we find in them. It is no light matter how we use this book. Eternal life or death depends on the spirit in which it is used.
Above all let us humbly pray for the teaching of the Holy Spirit. He alone can apply truth to our hearts, and make us profit by what we read.
The New Testament begins with the life, death, and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. No part of the Bible is so important as this, and no part is so full and complete. Four distinct Gospels tell us the story of Christ's doing and dying. Four times over we read the precious account of His works and words. How thankful we ought to be for this ! To know Christ is life eternal. To believe in Christ is to have peace with God. To follow Christ is to be a true Christian. To be with
Christ will be heaven itself. We can never hear too much about Jesus Christ.The Gospel of St. Matthew begins with a long list of names. Sixteen verses are taken up with tracing a pedigree from Abraham to David, and from David to the family in which Jesus was born. Let no one think that these verses are useless. Nothing is useless in creation. The least mosses, and the smallest insects, serve some good end. Nothing is useless in the Bible. Every word of it is inspired. The chapters and verses which seem at first sight unprofitable, are all given for some good purpose Look again at these sixteen verses, and you will see in them useful and instructive lessons.