Message from the Monthly Flyer November 2017
Matthew 1: 18-20 - KJV - Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily. But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.
Matthew is the first of the four evangelists who tells us what kind of person Joseph was. He speaks about him as being a just man. That means that he had a good heart. In his whole being, he was mindful about doing what is just and right in the sight of God. No, he was not perfect. He was a human being just like you and me. But when the Bible calls somebody a just person, it means that the person does things according to God’s righteousness. The deeds of that person are motivated and guided by that which is just in God’s sight. Joseph carried God’s righteousness in his heart. Which means that He was connected to God, and that’s why God was able to guide him according to His wisdom and righteousness. And because he was connected to his heavenly Father, he followed God’s counsel, he walked according to His will and was able to take good decisions for himself and for his family. Joseph understood that his role is to be a protector, even in the midst of a crisis.
The above passage of Scripture reveals to us that Joseph had a genuine love for Mary. It must have been very hard for him to see that she is pregnant while they are still engaged, and they both knew that he is not the author of that pregnancy. Joseph knew that according to the law of Moses, Mary had to be stoned to death because the fact that she was pregnant without being married supposed that she cheated on her husband to be. In other words, she dishonored herself, her fiancée, her parents, her nation and the God of her fathers. As a consequence, she deserved to die. But Joseph loved Mary with a sincere love. Even though he could not understand when she explained her visitation by the angel and her conception by the Holy Spirit, he preferred holding his peace and talk to God in prayer. And in His faithfulness, God gave him an answer and told him not to worry. He could take Mary as his wife because the child that she was carrying was from Him.
Even with this instruction that he received in a dream, Joseph could have allowed his human understanding to influence his final decision. The people in his surrounding could have also influenced him because all of them certainly had something to say about the situation. He must have faced the opposition and even the rejection of some of them who believed that he was not doing the right thing. It was clear that Mary deserved to be stoned, and it was written black and white in the law of Moses. But Joseph remained calm. Even though he was facing a very uncommon situation, he obeyed God’s instructions and was not disturbed out of measure. He chose to trust God on that way that seemed so much uncertain. He decided not to expose Mary to public shame and take her as his wife. How could she prove her innocence? The facts were there, speaking for themselves. But Mary had received a special grace. And because he was a just man who had a personal relationship with God, Joseph decided to protect and save the good reputation of his fiancée. So he agreed to marry a woman who was pregnant with a child whose father he was not. (To be continued). mt
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