• Eli Schnell

It Wasn't Another Man, Joseph

"Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: when His mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit. And Joseph her husband, being a righteous man and not wanting to disgrace her, planned to send her away secretly." (Matthew 1:18-19, NASB95)

Modern readers look back on this moment with wonder, amazed at such a miracle. A young lady who had never been with a man was to give birth to a son, Jesus, who would take away the world's sins. But Joseph was not a modern reader. When he realized Mary was carrying a child, Joseph was just a young man who had been looking forward to marrying this young woman, only to find that she had not remained chaste. His perception of her changed. The noblest choice available to him was to put her away without embarrassing fanfare.

At that moment, what defense could Mary offer? Imagine the conversation. “No, Joseph, the child is from the Holy Spirit.” Of all the half-baked excuses a guy could be asked to swallow, this one would be almost insulting. God had not interacted directly with humanity for hundreds of years, and now Joseph is expected to believe that the child carried by his betrothed has arrived immaculately?

Sometimes the plan of God requires individuals to endure confusing and troublesome circumstances. 2020 has often been both, and the shifting of a number on the calendar is not the solution. Instead of wandering in stress and confusion, consider how God may be intending to accomplish good through you. Look for your opportunities to do good and pursue them. As you do this, you will replace your stress and confusion with purposeful godliness.

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