“Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not wanting to make her a public example, was minded to put her away secretly.” – Matthew 1:19
Mary was pregnant with Jesus, yet she and Joseph had not been with each other sexually yet, this was a miracle of the Holy Spirit. Imagine how challenging this would have been for not only Mary to reason within herself but also Joseph. Can you imagine where his imagination and thoughts carried him off to? “Who was she with? Was she with one of my closest friends? Had someone taken advantage of her?” I would imagine, if he is anything like us today, those ideas may have crossed his mind. But then, he probably remembered God’s word and promise given in Isaiah 7 about the virgin birth, and it may have spoken to his heart.
Although his thoughts may have played with his emotions, we are told that his actions did not reflect them. Joseph and Mary were considered married already and he, lawfully, had every right to give her a certificate of divorce and make a public spectacle of her. But what do we see him do? He does the very opposite. He desires to do anything he can to work it out between the two of them. He wanted to keep it private so that she would not be shamed. He considered her and not just himself.
Look at the character of these two people. Mary desired to be obedient to God, and Joseph denied himself, his feelings and reputation, for the sake of his wife. He loved her and cared about her life more than his. What a true man of God!
Through their obedience and selfless acts, Jesus the Messiah was born! His name was lifted up, and He brought salvation to the world! What would happen today if we considered others? What would happen today if we were open with our spouse, told them we loved them and considered what they are going through as more important than what we are going through? When Joseph and Mary did this, our Savior was born. I wonder what God would do today through us if we demonstrated this kind of love and obedience? Could there be another revival? I wonder…
“So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself.” – Ephesians 5:28