[Jesus] came to his hometown and began to teach the people in their synagogue, so that they were that they were astounded and said, “Where did this man get this wisdom and these deeds of power? Is not this the carpenter’s son?”
We know very little about Joseph. God chose Joseph to be the earthly father of Jesus. The Bible tells us in the Gospel of Matthew, that Joseph was a righteous man. His actions toward Mary, his fiancé, revealed he was a kind and sensitive man. When Mary told Joseph she was pregnant, he had every right to feel disgraced. He knew the child was not his own, and Mary’s apparent unfaithfulness carried a grave social stigma. Joseph not only had the right to divorce Mary, under Jewish law she could be put to death by stoning.
Although Joseph’s initial reaction was to break the engagement, the appropriate thing for a righteous man to do, he treated Mary with extreme kindness. He did not want to cause her further shame, so he decided to act quietly. But God sent an angel to Joseph to verify Mary’s story and reassure him that his marriage to her was God’s will. Joseph willingly obeyed God, in spite of the public humiliation he would face. Perhaps this noble quality made him God’s choice for the Messiah’s earthly father.
The Bible does not reveal much detail about Joseph’s role as father to Jesus Christ, but we know from Matthew that he was an excellent earthly example of integrity and righteousness. Joseph is last mentioned in Scripture when Jesus was 12 years old. We know that he passed on the carpentry trade to his son and raised him in the Jewish traditions and spiritual observances.
Today, I hope that you find a way to live your life like Joseph. I hope we can all learn to be people with that kind of faith.
“Live so that when your children think of fairness, caring, and integrity, they think of you.” ― J. Jackson Brown, Jr.
Thank you for giving us so many examples of people that we can model our lives after. Thank you for showing us that is possible to live a life of honor, integrity and faith. And thank you when you forgive us for those times that we don’t live up to that potential.