Joseph – A Model of Obedience
First of all thank God for blessing us to live in the year 2013! Undoubtedly many of us celebrated the New Year with family and friends while declaring what changes we would like to make in our lives. Some of us have made goals related to our physical health, spiritual health, or desire to achieve some type of economic goal. While we are still at the beginning of a new year in our lives I felt compelled to focus on the topic of obedience. I want to specifically look at the the obedience of Joseph as it relates to the birth of Jesus Christ and how we can apply some principles from his life to ours.
Let’s take a look at Matthew 1:18-24 [HCSB]:
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. 20 But after he had considered these things, an angel of the Lord suddenly appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, don’t be afraid to take Mary as your wife, because what has been conceived in her is by the Holy Spirit. 21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to name Him Jesus,because He will save His people from their sins.” 22 Now all this took place to fulfill what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet: 23See, the virgin will become pregnant and give birth to a son, and they will name Him Immanuel, [b] which is translated “God is with us.” 24 When Joseph got up from sleeping, he did as the Lord’s angel had commanded him. He married her 25 but did not know her intimately until she gave birth to a son. And he named Him Jesus.
Can you imagine being Joseph in this situation? You are engaged to your fiancee and one day she tells you that she is pregnant in spite of the fact that the two of you have not had any type of physical relationship. Most of us would immediately think that our significant other was unfaithful. Just think for a minute what would your reaction would have been if you heard this news from your fiancee or how would you feel telling this information to your fiancee.
I believe that Joseph’s reaction was totally different from ours. After being told in a dream by the angel that the child was conceived by the Holy Spirit Joseph did as the angel commanded him and married Mary. The word of the Lord changed Joseph’s mindset. From this account we can learn a few things from Joseph’s obedience. Here are two points that stood out to me:
- In spite of our circumstances and emotions we should obey God instructions to us from His word. I’m pretty sure Joseph’s emotions were all over the place when Mary told him about the pregnancy, however, he obeyed the instructions that were given to him.
- The word of God will change our minds and help us make the best decisions for our lives. It only took the word of the Lord from the angel to move Joseph from a mindset of leaving Mary to following through with her commitment to her. We can take comfort in the Bible’s ability to change us. Romans 12:2, Psalm 119
Let us all pray that the Holy Spirit would show us how to apply these scriptures and every other word of the Lord to our lives. God Bless!
Curtis loves to read, write, and listen to music in his spare time. He also enjoys photography and traveling to different locations in the U.S. and the world. He currently resides in Washington State with his beautiful wife Jenette. Curtis desires to continuously grow in the Lord and share his knowledge through writing and teaching. You can get a peek into his world by checking him out on Twitter.