Mary of the House of David?


Matthew 1:16 tells us that Joseph was of the House of David. Was Mary also from the House of David?


There is some debate about this. See The Catholic Encyclopedia and Wikipedia for discussion.

According to St. Luke, Mary was a cousin of Elizabeth, wife of the priest Zechariah of the priestly division of Abijah, who was herself part of the lineage of Aaron and so of the tribe of Levi.[Luke 1:5;1:36] Some of those who consider that the relationship with Elizabeth was on the maternal side, consider that Mary, like Joseph, to whom she was betrothed, was of the House of David and so of the Tribe of Judah, and that the genealogy of Jesus presented in Luke 3 from Nathan, third son of David and Bathsheba, is in fact the genealogy of Mary, while the genealogy from Solomon given in Matthew 1 is that of Joseph.[14][15] (Aaron’s wife Elisheba was of the tribe of Judah, so all his descendents are from both Levi and Judah.)[Num.1:7 & Ex.6:23]


Here is the short answer Marita Glasner.

Almost certainly yes.

Realize Jesus took His sacred flesh from the Blessed Virgin Mary.

NICENE CREED Who for us men and for our salvation came down from heaven. And he was made flesh by the Holy Spirit from the Virgin Mary, and was made man.

NICENE CREED (Latin) Qui propter nos homines et propter nostram salutem descendit de caelis. Et incarnatus est de Spiritu Sancto ex Maria Virgine, et homo factus est.

COUNCIL OF EPHESUS (431 A.D.) . . . So he who existed and was begotten of the Father before all ages is also said to have been begotten according to the flesh of a woman, without the divine nature either beginning to exist in the holy virgin, or needing of itself a second begetting after that from his Father. (For it is absurd and stupid to speak of the one who existed before every age and is coeternal with the Father, needing a second beginning so as to exist.) The Word is said to have been begotten according to the flesh, because for us and for our salvation he united what was human to himself hypostatically and came forth from a woman. For he was not first begotten of the holy virgin, a man like us, and then the Word descended upon him; but from the very womb of his mother he was so united and then underwent begetting according to the flesh, making his own the begetting of his own flesh.
—From Second letter of Cyril to Nestorius (Declared by the council of Ephesus
to be in agreement with Nicaea; 431 A.D.)

**GENESIS 3:15a ** 15 I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed;

Now keeping in mind Jesus took His sacred flesh from the Blessed Virgin Mary, consider the following verse . . . .

ROMANS 1:3a-4a** descended from David according to the flesh 4 and designated Son of God in power according to the Spirit . . .

Jesus descended “from David” who was of tribe of Judah (Jewish), “according to the flesh”. Yet Jesus only took flesh of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

If ONLY Joseph (and NOT the Blessed Virgin Mary) was of the tribe of Judah, St. Paul probably would have said: “descended from David according to the law.”

But St. Paul didn’t say that.

If you want I can give you the long answer from our local Bible study but it has a LOT of detail (probably much more than you want).

Let me know on here if you want more detail and if I can, I will dig it up for you.

Hopefully this is adequate for you.

God bless.


Brief excerpt from our local study below . . . .

Some of the ancient Manichean heretics tried this objection with the early Church and it didn’t work there either.

[INDENT]Reply to Objection 1. Faustus the Manichean argued thus, in the desire to prove that Christ is not the Son of David, because He was not conceived of Joseph, in whom Matthew’s genealogy terminates. Augustine answered this argument thus (Contra Faust. xxii): “Since the same evangelist affirms that Joseph was Mary’s husband and that Christ’s mother was a virgin, and that Christ was of the seed of Abraham, what must we believe, but that Mary was not a stranger to the family of David: and that it is not without reason that she was called the wife of Joseph, by reason of the close alliance of their hearts, although not mingled in the flesh; and that the genealogy is traced down to Joseph rather than to her by reason of the dignity of the husband? So therefore we believe that Mary was also of the family of David: because we believe the Scriptures, which assert both that Christ was of the seed of David according to the flesh, and that Mary was His Mother, not by sexual intercourse but retaining her virginity.” For as Jerome says on Matthew 1:18: “Joseph and Mary were of the same tribe: wherefore he was bound by law to marry her as she was his kinswoman. Hence it was that they were enrolled together at Bethlehem, as being descended from the same stock .”

St. Thomas Aquinas. Summa Theologica. Third Part Q. 31. Article 2. [/INDENT]


There is some thought that the two geneologies listed in the Gospels, one refers to Joseph’s lineage, and the other to Mary’s.


If you ever look at one of the old “Jesse tree” illuminations or medieval carvings, you will see that Mary is always portrayed as a descendant of Ruth, Jesse, David, Solomon, et al, with Jesus descending biologically from David through her.

Here’s a picture from Wikimedia of a Jesse Tree in King James IV of Scotland’s psalter.


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