As Jesus continued to teach in the temple courts, He presented to the teachers a paradox:

"How is it that the teachers of the law say that the Christ is the Son of David?"

Jesus cites David speaking by the Holy Spirit in Ps. 110:1 as calling the Christ "Lord". He is affirming that the Messiah will be a descendant of David. Jesus then presents to them a paradox: "David himself calls Him Lord. How then can He be his son?"

Scripture doesn't seem to give us an answer. But Mark tells us that the crowd "listened with delight" (Mark 12:37). Why would they be delighted at this paradoxical question, which Jesus does not appear to have answered?

We know that Jesus was born of a virgin named Mary, whose father was Heli, a descendant of David (Luke 3:23). We also know that Jesus' adoptive father was Mary's betrothed, Joseph, also a descendant of David (Matt. 1:1-16). Finally, and of greatest importance, we know that Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:35).

With this background, we are able to solve the great paradox, that Jesus is biologically a Son of David through Mary, the Son of God through the Holy Spirit, and an adopted son of David through Joseph.

Are you delighted yet? Let's explore the meaning of this.

  • Jesus was without sin - He was not born into sin as all of mankind was (1Jn. 3:5)
  • Jesus, like us, was tempted in every way but did not sin (Heb. 4:15)
  • We're all adopted into God's family through Jesus (Eph. 1:5)

So Jesus, both a descendant of David and the Son of God is not only the Jewish Messiah but also our Messiah by adoption!

So join with those in the crowds who listened to Him with delight that Messiah has come!"