In a world where others get a lot of attention, do you ever feel obscure? Do you have siblings who have gained the limelight and you sit in the shadow? Does your boss seem to know everyone well but you? Then you will love the name for today. His name is Nathan, son of David.
Did you know that King David had a son named Nathan? He is listed twice in the Old Testament, both in the book of I Chronicles, in those first nine chapters that many people skip because they are mostly just a list of names. People actually are saved by reading those chapters, so don’t discount the power of the whole word of God. Anyway, Nathan is listed there. His more famous brother Solomon got a lot of press. His famous half brothers Adonijah and Absalom got a lot of press. But Nathan got mentioned only in a list of names. That is all the press he received in the New Testament as well. But it is an important mention.
Jesus was his direct physical descendant. Jesus did not descend physically from Solomon. Luke 3 tells us that genealogy went from David to Nathan. The Gospel of Matthew records the kingly line which was cut off because of the sin of Jeconiah (Matt. 1:11). That means that Solomon was not the ancestor of Jesus, but Solomon’s mother Bathsheba was. She was also the mother of Nathan. Obscure Nathan, the son of David about whom we know nothing, is the ancestor of the Christ.
Jesus talked much on this topic. His disciples were always pressing Him on who would be the greatest. He put a little child in front of them and said, “Here he is.” Jesus said that He came to serve and not be served. Paul said that we should live in “lowliness of mind” and “esteeming others better than ourselves”. The message is simple. No matter how obscure our name is on earth, what matters is that our name is written down in glory. That we are part of the family of Jesus Christ is all that truly matters for now or eternity.
Christ is worldwide King and we are His. There is full joy and no obscurity in this truth. Martin Luther records this in his Christmas hymn “Dear Christian People, All Rejoice”. “The Son came, saying: ‘Cling to Me, thy sorrows now are ending; freely I give Myself to thee, thy life with Mine defending; for I am thine and thou art Mine, and where I am there thou shalt shine, the foe shall never reach us’.”