This time of year, everywhere you look you see nativity scenes. Hear those Bible stories from the beginnings of Matthew and Luke. Songs on the radio like “Hark the Herald Angels Sing” and “Mary, Did You Know?” Praise and wonder for Mary, the mother of Jesus.
You know who often gets overlooked when we talk about the birth of Christ?
We talk about Mary. About how special she was to be chosen by God to bear His Son. How she must have felt as she held Jesus. As she watched Him grow, followed His ministry, and watched Him die.
But sometimes we forget about Joesph. Or at least just mention him in passing. Maybe partly because we aren’t told much about him, and he isn’t mentioned beyond Jesus’s childhood, like Mary is.
But really think about Joseph.
Just as God chose Mary to be Jesus’s mother, He chose Joseph to be His father. We are told very little about him, but he must have had some pretty good qualities and credentials. Allow me to speculate.
For one, he had to be a man of faith. Mary knew what was going on. She knew the pregnancy was a miraculous thing. But Joseph? He had to trust what Mary and the angel told him. He could have dismissed them and went ahead and “put her away”. But he didn’t. He had faith and married her and took care of her and Jesus, and the other children who came after.
He must have been a good man. A God-fearing man who would raise his children to be the same. One who did his best to follow God and keep his ordinances in the Jewish faith. A man who would have taught his children the ways of God and been a good example to them.
He would have been a hard working man. He was a craftsman and taught Jesus his craft.
He was a respectful, responsible, and strong man. He wanted to do what was right. He wanted to take care of Mary even when he thought she had been unfaithful. God knew he was strong enough to bear the responsibility of raising Jesus, knowing who He was, and the burden that would have come with that.
No, we aren’t told much about Joseph. But He is also an important part of the story. Just think about the man he would have been to be chosen as Jesus’s earthly father.