MUSINGS – December 19, 2018



Matthew 1:18-25
The birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. His mother Mary had been promised to Joseph in marriage. But before they were married, Mary realized that she was pregnant by the Holy Spirit. Her husband Joseph was an honorable man and did not want to disgrace her publicly. So he decided to break the marriage agreement with her secretly. Joseph had this in mind when an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream. The angel said to him, “Joseph, descendant of David, don’t be afraid to take Mary as your wife. She is pregnant by the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus He Saves, because he will save his people from their sins.” All this happened so that what the Lord had spoken through the prophet came true: “The virgin will become pregnant and give birth to a son, and they will name him Immanuel,” which means “God is with us.” When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him to do. He took Mary to be his wife. He did not have marital relations with her before she gave birth to a son. Joseph named the child Jesus.

About 700 years before the birth of Jesus, the prophet Isaiah warned the Jewish people,
“Listen now, descendants of David,” Isaiah said. “Isn’t it enough that you try the patience of mortals? Must you also try the patience of my God?

Their constant rejection of God and refusal to follow His commandments was testing His patience. But God had a plan in place for the redemption of all people.

So the Lord himself will give you this sign: A virgin will become pregnant and give birth to a son, and she will name him Immanuel God Is With Us. (Isaiah 7:13-14,)

We are at the end of Advent and the celebration of Christ’s birth is near. We will hear the remarkable stories of angelic announcements to the shepherds, the birth in a stable, and the visit of the wise men. Matthew doesn’t mention any of that.

Earlier he established Jesus long earthly ancestral lineage from Abraham through David to Jesus. Now he reveals his true heavenly lineage from God, She is pregnant by the Holy Spirit. And reminds his readers that God had revealed that to His people long ago.

God always has had a plan for our/your/my salvation. This is the true reason we celebrate Christmas.

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All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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