Why does St. Matthew say there are 42 generations from Abraham to Christ but when we count them there are only 41?
Saint Matthew says: “So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations, from David until the captivity in Babylon are fourteen generations, and from the captivity in Babylon until the Christ are fourteen generations” (Matt. 1:17). But when we count them, we find them to be 41 only. What then is the secret?
The reason is that Jeconiah was counted twice, because he is like the angle stone, an intermediate between two generations, and so he was counted with each of the two. From David who had sinned, they went down to the captivity to the age of Jeconiah, And from Jecohiah, they went up to the generation of Christ who has emancipated them. Jeconiah was in that matter, a symbol of Christ, who was described as “the stone which was rejected by the builders, which has become the chief cornerstone”.