man's decision 2,000 years ago change hearts today?
Pastor Mark Weber of Mount Pulaski Christian Church
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[December 17, 2015]
Matthew 1:18-19 it records: “Now the birth of Jesus Christ took
place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to
Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child of
the Holy Spirit; and her husband Joseph, being a just man and
unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly.”
Joseph and Mary are legally covenanted together as husband and
wife, and there is a date set for their wedding. Everybody in town
knows that their wedding is coming, because it’s a small town. Then,
Joseph gets the most devastating news of his life: She’s pregnant.
This was two thousand years ago in a conservative, rural, religious
town, where everyone probably was Jewish. That makes it particularly
scandalous and devastating.
So, what’s Joseph going to do? Men, what would you do? When you get
betrayed, what’s the natural response?
Joseph decides that he will divorce her quietly. He doesn’t want to
destroy her, even though she cheated on him. He doesn’t want to
shame her. He’s not getting vengeance. He’ll do it quietly.
But then he gets a dream and God calls him to marry her anyway. This
was not the family that Joseph envisioned. His vision of his future
goes something like this: “I’m a virgin, she’s a virgin, that means
she’s not pregnant. We don’t need to alter the color of the dress;
nobody’s whispering during our ceremony; there are no questions
about her integrity. We get married; we live a simple life, a quiet
life, in the middle of nowhere; people don’t talk about us.” That’s
all he wanted. That’s what he envisioned.
Here’s my question for all of us, but particularly for us men. Men,
will you love and lead the family God has given you, even if it’s
not the one you envisioned?
Most of the time, the script you have written for your future and
family is different from the script that God will hand you-- and you
have a decision to make. Will I read the script that he has handed
me? Or will I run?
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Joseph did not plan to marry a single mom, and even though she’s
godly, everybody’s going to think she’s a tramp. And his son --
they’re going to say horrible things about him, and Joseph will be
the laughing stock of the town because everyone’s going to think
it’s a joke that his wife cheated on him and then told him it was
from God -- and he’s gullible enough to believe it and raise
somebody else’s kid.
This is not what Joseph had envisioned. But he obeyed God.
Will you love and lead the family God has given you, even if it’s
not the one you envisioned? That’s what good and godly men (like