What Is Jesus' Family Tree?


Quick Answer

Jesus's family tree shows his descent through the lines of Israel's kings and is meant to establish his earthly claim to the throne of Israel. His genealogy is recounted in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke.

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Full Answer

Christians have proposed several explanations for the discrepancies between Matthew and Luke's genealogies. Some argue that Matthew describes the genealogy of Joseph and Luke that of Mary. St. Augustine believed that Joseph had a biological father and an adoptive father, and that the two genealogies show how two of King David's lines converge in Jesus, one of Solomon and the other of Nathan. Another traditional explanation is that Matthew is not describing biological descent but legal inheritance.

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