December 23, 2020
Few Words – Matthew 1:18-25; 2:13-23
Dr. Larry S. Lightner
An angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife . . . she shall bear a son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins. –Matthew 1:20-21
I have heard of men being described as a man of few words. However, it seems that Joseph wins the prize. We hear from many characters in the Christmas story—Mary, the shepherds, the wise men, and even a donkey. Not Joseph. He does not seem to have any lines given to him.
He does not sing, he does not bring gifts, he just seems to stand there in sandals/robe, minding his own business. However, his actions divulge much more. His faith allows him to be used just as God planned. As a pastor, I have had the blessed experience of having men in my churches that just served; they did not question, just wanted to give God glory through their servanthood. I would have loved to have Joseph in my churches.
On the night before the birth of Jesus, Joseph’s faith gave him opportunity for God to use him in significant ways before/after the birth. He was a man of few words but great acts of faith. He experienced the peace of god to move forward in his faith.
It is no accident Joseph ended up as an adoptive father for Jesus. Joseph allows Jesus to use his name as Jesus the Messiah fulfilled the prophecy of coming through the line of David. Joseph received the notice through a dream. He was obedient, but we are not told what he said.
Joseph simply acted in faith. He did not pursue doubt regarding Mary and the baby God entrusted to him. He believed what God said. He lived out his life in the peace of God.
Joseph’s actions were foretold; Joseph fulfilled prophecies of hundreds of years earlier. He would be called out of Egypt; he would be called a Nazarene. So, Joseph protected Mary and his adopted son.
Not everything goes according to our plans. However, in God’s will, everything goes according to plan. God offers course corrections to us in our lives to keep us on track. Joseph teaches us that the right response is to always trust God and obey. That does not require speech making, it requires action. When we do, God will not only bless us, but also use us to fulfill his perfect plan in the world. Praise be to God. He is always the wiser and serving Him brings peace to our lives. Interesting that we read these principles being acted out in several characters in God’s Word.
- Pray that not only should we listen to hear, but that we should respond with clear obedience to holy God.
- Pray that the peace of God will accompany our willingness to follow after God in all that He expects and desires us to do.