Heli was Mary the Mother of Jesus’ dad. That would make him Jesus’ maternal grandfather. The Bible is silent about Heli, who he was, what he did for a living and what kind of relationship he had with his grandson Jesus. We only know his name.


     There are two different genealogies in the Bible that traces Jesus his heritage. The first one is found in Matthew 1 and the other in Luke 3. Most theologians believe that Matthew records the lineage of Joseph while Luke records the lineage of Mary. If that’s true then Luke tells us that Mary’s dad was named Heli. Which makes me wonder how did Jesus relate to his grandpa. Well that’s left to our imagination because we really don’t know. But it is interesting to think that Jesus had grandfathers and He probably had a normal relationship with them like any little boy in Nazareth at the time. The account in Matthew states very clearly that Jacob was the name of Jesus’ paternal grandfather.


Jacob and Heli, the two men that Jesus called “Grandfather”. I wonder what these two men thought about the events in the lives of their sons and daughters and especially their grandson Jesus. I wonder what Jesus called his grandfathers? Did he spend time with them, go to church with them, learn a trade from them? We may never know on this side of eternity but it does make the point that Jesus, the God of all creation, grew up like a regular little boy in a small town.


    This Christmas past all of our family gathered at our house to celebrate Christmas together. There were 19 of us counting all of the grandkids! This year we have nine grandkids. Nine! We are so blessed and sometimes can’t believe how beautiful and wonderful our family turned out. We’re so grateful to God for His grace on all of our children and their children.


Before I had grand children I planned to be called ‘grandfather’ because it just sounds so awesome. But as it turns out most little children can’t say “grandfather” early on in their life so I became just “Papa”.


   Well technically it’s “Papa Bear” and I must say it’s my most favorite title that I’ve ever been given. I think my girls when they were home started calling me Papa years ago. And now it’s spread to all of my grandkids. I think they added the word “Bear”  because of how much I love the Smoky Mountains.

So I’m now Papa Bear to nine little bears (and counting) oh yeah and one little dog.


Merry Christmas to all of my little bears.