December 18, 2017
Joseph her husband, since he was a righteous man, yet unwilling to expose her to shame, decided to divorce her quietly. Mt_1:18-25
It was a complicated story right from the very start.
How does God come among mankind quietly? How does God convince mankind to change his ways without forcing him, without taking away that gift of free will? It would not be a nuclear explosion. It would not be a meteor scraping the atmosphere of the entire planet. It would not be easy!
Somehow or other there had to be disturbances, though. There had to be ripples in the fabric of human normalcy. An angel or two to a selected few. An almost imperceptible sign in the sky – except for those who were looking for it. An outcast little town in an outcast little dark and dreary animal stall. Who’d have imagined!
And there in another outcast little town of Nazareth. There, were the high school queen and the football quarterback betrothed. A match made in heaven. UNTIL! Until she turns up pregnant. OMG!
Well, that’s exactly WHO it was!
And in the perfect response of the most upstanding couple in town, Joseph, rather than rashly having the woman stoned to death, as the law required of an adulteress, Joseph decided to quietly divorce her. And, though it might not mean immediate death for Mary, it would begin a long and quiet death of isolation and poverty for the woman with the scarlet letter A branded into her forehead!
And no, she wouldn’t be jumping up and down in a rage, insisting that an angel did it! She wouldn’t be blaming the president or the senators, that it was all just another case of sexual abuse. She was as upstanding and righteous as he. No, she would piously accept whatever God had in store for her, be it an immediate or slow death, be it poverty or loneliness or persecution.
When lo, just as an angel appeared to her,
one appeared to him as well.
How does God quietly come into a world that would refuse to understand, even a meteor? He comes as a pretty normal looking babe, to a pretty normal looking homecoming king and queen who just had their thrones taken away. Starting from scratch in a dark and dusty cave, among the smelly beasts of burden, Joseph and Mary would righteously accept their dire circumstances and know in their hearts that they had just become – the very PARENTS of God himself!
A complicated story indeed!
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