Today’s Reading: Matt. 1:18 – 25
How often do we think of Joseph? Perhaps you have thought of him, more than I have during Christmas time, but this man who was Mary’s husband, but not Jesus’ biological father was also chosen by God. I’m thinking that God wanted a good example for His son, and a man who would treat both Jesus and Mary with respect and kindness. We get of glimpse of this in the reading Matthew 1:18,19:
18 This is how Jesus the Messiah was born. His mother, Mary, was engaged to be married to Joseph. But before the marriage took place, while she was still a virgin, she became pregnant through the power of the Holy Spirit. 19 Joseph, her fiancé, was a good man and did not want to disgrace her publicly, so he decided to break the engagement quietly.
Imagine that. He didn’t call the Inquirer or book a seat on the “Maury show” of Jesus’ day. Matthew calls Joseph a good man. We don’t often see him in the gospels, but when we do – He is obeying God. When instructed he took Mary and Jesus to Egypt when they all needed to flee Herod’s wrath, and returned the to Galilee when he was assured it was safe.
Today’s Carol was actually written as a poem by Christina Rosetti. There are a few different melodies, but the words are the same, this is the first stanza :
Love came down at Christmas,
Love all lovely, Love Divine,
Love was born at Christmas,
Star and Angels gave the sign.
My favorite line is Love was born at Christmas – how simple, how sacredly true – If Joseph had not loved Mary and Jesus – the story would have been quite different. If Jesus had not come on Christmas as Emmanuel – “God with us” – we would have no hope. If Jesus didn’t love us dearly, there would’ve been no reason to bother.Love truly did come down at Christmas.
A very fun modern day take on this carol