Summary: Heli was Mary’s father.

Explanation: The lineage of Matthew 1 traces Jesus’ ancestry through Joseph. Matthew 1:16, “And Jacob begot Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus who is called Christ.” Notice that Jacob is clearly identified as Joseph’s father.

Whereas Jesus’ lineage through Mary is recorded in Luke chapter 3. “Jesus was about thirty years old when he began his public ministry. Jesus was known as the son of Joseph. Joseph was the son of Heli,” Luke 3:23 (New Living Translation). Here it seems that Joseph is the son of Heli. Joseph cannot have had two fathers. Thus, two different ancestries have been recorded. 

The ambiguity in Luke leads us to believe the Luke scriptures trace Mary’s line. Jesus was known as the son of Jospeh (NLT). The same scripture in the New King James reads, “Now Jesus Himself began His ministry at about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, the son of Heli.”

In the Bible, lineages are recorded through the fathers. Therefore, Mary’s name is not specifically mentioned in the Luke account. However, scholars agree that this must be Mary’s line, and Heli (Luke 3:23) is clearly identified as her father.