Ancient Words: Name Above All Names, Three Josephs Number 2
The story of Joseph #2 is found in the first 2 chapters of Matthew and Luke. This Joseph is the son of Jacob, just like Joseph #1, and in similar fashion, Joseph #2 is a “righteousness man”(Matt 1.19). He could have used a legal approach when he learned his espoused wife to be was with child but he did not. Instead, he chose not to disgrace Mary, showing a compassionate heart for what had to be an unexplainable event to his friends and family. The Angel, Gabriel, visits Joseph in his dream and twice communicates what he should do. (It should be noted that Gabriel has spoken only to two men in the Ancient Words—Daniel and Joseph.) Joseph is a favored, honorable man just like Daniel! Joseph takes Mary for his wife, yet abstains from any union with her until after the child is born, and then travels to Egypt and remains in a transient status with his young family of three until instructed again to leave for their home in Nazareth after the death of Herod.
“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. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS (Mat 1:19-25).”
“And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him. When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt: And was there until the death of Herod: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt have I called my son (Mat 2:13-15).”
“But when Herod was dead, behold, an angel of the Lord appeareth in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, Saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and go into the land of Israel: for they are dead which sought the young child’s life. And he arose, and took the young child and his mother, and came into the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus did reign in Judaea in the room of his father Herod, he was afraid to go thither: notwithstanding, being warned of God in a dream, he turned aside into the parts of Galilee: And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene (Mat 2:19-23).”
Scott and Jane Johnson minister with East Faulkner Church of Christ and BRG Bible. Bible questions can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Won’t You Be My Neighbor
I recently watched a documentary on Fred Rogers. It took me back to childhood memories where I learned that I was special and that everybody mattered. It was through a television camera and a trolley that transported myself and millions of others through Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood into the Land Of Make Believe! Although, it was television I desperately wanted to live in this neighborhood! It was a safe neighborhood where we would sometimes get a delivery from Mr. McFeeley from Speedy Delivery or maybe take a field trip to see how things were made. Often we would spend time in the Land of Make Believe and watch real life scenarios unfold between family or friends and we would learn how to problem solve with respect and kind words. He would talk about the “Golden Rule” and being nice to others. He always talked about being “neighborly”. Who was his neighbor and where was this neighborhood? Everyone he met was his neighbor and the world was his neighborhood! Wouldn’t it be great if we all decided to be each other’s neighbor? The world would then become our neighborhood as well! The Bible speaks of “neighbors”: Romans 15:2 says, “Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up.” Luke 10:27 is clear,”You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” Later down in verse 29 the question is asked of Jesus “who is my neighbor?” Finish reading the rest of that passage for a great lesson! “I have always wanted to have a neighbor just like you, I’ve always wanted to live in a neighborhood with you…” Let’s All Be Neighbors! What a neighborhood!
Captain Jason Perdieu is corps officer of the Salvation Army of El Dorado.