Example of Joseph
18 The birth of Jesus Christ came about this way: After His mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, it was discovered before they came together that she was pregnant by the Holy Spirit. 19 So her husband Joseph, being a righteous man,and not wanting to disgrace her publicly, decided to divorce her secretly.
Joseph must have been crushed. The only logical explanation of his beloved’s pregnancy was infidelity. Betrayal by the one he cherished and trusted. (The angel hadn’t yet visited.)
Yet BECAUSE he was a righteous man he decided to divorce her quietly. According to the law he could have had her killed. Yet in the midst of his hurt and betrayal, he STILL had her best interest at the front of his mind. He was going to divorce her quietly so she wouldn’t be a laughing stock or have to face the death penalty.
Has your spouse wounded you? Have they withheld sex or affection? Have they betrayed you? How are you leading your heart to respond?
Are you responding like Joseph? In the midst of the pain, are you keeping their best interest in mind? Are you continuing to serve and love and be generous and forgiving? Are you continuing to keep your heart gentle and tender?
That’s the example of Joseph.
And is it any wonder that Jesus, dying on the cross, followed his earthly daddy’s example and kept our best interest in mind as we crucified him? ‘Father forgive them, they don’t know what they are doing.’
Holy Spirit, would you please strengthen us to imitate Joseph because he has the heart of Christ. May we act in love when we are wounded. Keep our hearts tender. Give us strength to fight to forgive and not give into the temptation of the enemy to allow our hearts to grow cold and hard.
Develop in us the heart of Christ for our good and your glory.
And was it any wonder that when the angle shows up in the next verse that he is addressed as Joseph son of David. (Matt 1:16 lists Jacob as Joseph’s dad)
David was a man after God’s heart. A righteous man who sought the Lord. He was the man of God’s choosing.
What an honor for Joseph to be addressed as Son of David by God Almighty through the angel. Wow!
I once saw a Christmas special in which a singer had written a song for Joseph. She said she always felt badly for Joseph because no one explained to him what was going on.
On the surface, that’s just blatantly false. Yet, on a deeper level, it ignores the very great role that Joseph played, as though he was some clueless fool along for the ride. It bothered me when she said that, as though she were pitying a man who deserves our respect.
Joseph is such a tremendous role model for all of us, but especially husbands. I admire him so much for wanting to divorce Mary quietly before he knew what was happening. It speaks volumes about his character when he must have been so hurt.
The definition of husband as a verb is to manage or steward. What better example of a good steward than Joseph?