June 20, 2020 Sermon Review
Matthew 1:18-25; Proverbs 20:7
Whenever we think of famous fathers from the pages of holy writ, there are a few names that immediately leap from the pages. For instance, there is Jacob and his twelve sons, from four different women. Then there is Job who endured the tragic loss of his four children, and Noah who was able to save his entire family from imminent destruction from a flood by building the ark. Then of course, there is thefather of all fathers, father Abraham. But with all of these well-known fathers from the Bible, there is probably one father who gets very little press. The father to whom I’m referring is Joseph, husband to the Virgin Mary and stepfather to Jesus, the Son of God. You would think someone with these kinds of credentials would be on the lips of every believer and would have at least received a great deal more press from the writers of scripture. But although this father in question has spent a great deal of Christendom in obscurity, I believe there are lessons that we as fathers, stepfathers and followers of Christ in general, can learn from this amazing husband and stepdad, as we shall see in our message, “Father to Father.
▪ In his willingness to remain with Mary and to raise the child that she was carrying as if he was his very own, Joseph demonstrated that when it comes to the issue of justice, the agent of grace should always be characterized in the life of the believer. It is the character that Jesus displayed as he hung upon the cross for the sins of all humanity and it is the character that God would have displayed in the lives of all his children. Matthew 1:18-25; Luke 18:1-8;Romans 5:8-10; Jeremiah 15:15-21
▪ There is probably no greater act of faith than that on the part of Joseph to take Mary as his lawful wife, knowing full well the ridicule and shame that it would bring upon him and his family. But it is through Joseph’s faithful act that we see what it truly means to “walk by faith and not by sight.” – 2 Corinthians 5:1-7
It is clear from the life of Joseph that in order to have a huge impact on the world, you don’t have to be the most successful or the most well known person around. All that God requires of us is that we remain faithful and to leave the rest up to him.
Question for Reflection
How do you feel that you would have responded to Mary’s predicament if you were in Joseph’s shoes? Do you feel that you would have been as courageous as Joseph in handling the situation? Has there been a similar situation in your life where justice could have been your response but instead you responded with an act of grace?
Quotes of the Week
“Mary’s secret could be hidden no longer, and when Joseph knew her condition, he was greatly troubled. As far as he knew, she had been unfaithful to him, and in that state of mind two courses were open to him. Either he could expose her as a public example, which probably would mean her death, or else he could put her away privately. His love for her triumphed over his injured sense of justice and he chose to follow the latter… and never does Joseph appear greater than in his choice to protect May and the Babe with his name. He shared her shame before men and her glory before God.” – Herschel Hobbs
“I believe the family was established long before the church, and my duty is to my family first. I am not to neglect my family.” – Dwight L. Moody
“Train up a child in the way he should go – but be sure you go that way yourself.” – Charles Spurgeon