Joseph, Jesus’ earthly step-father, was a simple, ordinary carpenter. He didn’t appear before Jesus’ birth and disappeared after Jesus was twelve. We know little about Him; yet, his story is in God’s narrative of redemption. Many portrayals of Joseph gloss over the raw material and picture an almost perfect man. Instead, Joseph was a champion who faced overcoming the shape into which his world had molded him.
Joseph was righteous, but still a man. He didn’t recognize God at work when Mary was found to be with child. He had followed Jewish customs to seek betrothal. To him, betrothal had become betrayal. The costs were high for him, as well as Mary. God’s plan was risky, and on the surface, not very God-like.
Joseph disliked God’s plan. God had to take an opposed and fuming Joseph and remold him into Jesus’ earthly father. Joseph went further; he disagreed with God’s plan. In fact, he plotted to oppose and stop God’s plan. None-the-less, God redirected Joseph to become a key figure in every Christian’s history.
The Christmas story shows us that God uses people who are opposed to the way He works. He is unhindered by opposition.
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