Few aspects of the Bible seem less relevant to daily life than genealogies. Yet for Gospel writers Matthew and Luke, they were absolutely essential for understanding Jesus.
Genealogies fulfilled multiple purposes in the ancient world. Society was organized around kinship patterns, so every family needed lists that described their ancestral pedigree. Such family trees determined a person's social relationships. For instance, two families planning the marriage of their children would compare family lines to check kinship ties to ensure the two were "compatible." And rulers used genealogies to justify their power, rank, and status.
So why are the genealogical trees in Matthew and Luke so different?
You can read the rest of this very interesting article at Christianity Today.