Friday, December 12, 2008

The Heart of Joseph


I've always wondered if Joseph was intimidated by the child Jesus. As Jesus was growing up, did Joseph fear disciplining him? How do you discipline God? The Son of God? The long-awaited Messiah?

We don't get a lot of insight into Joseph from the Gospels. We know that he had a chance to "put Mary aside," because of her supposed infidelity, but he didn't. And we don't get any indication that he treated Jesus any differently because the boy wasn't "truly" his son. We know that he taught Jesus his trade of carpentry. I wonder what Joseph thought Jesus would become. Did he think Jesus would save the world through woodworking or did he just not know what else to do than to teach his adopted son what he would have taught his own flesh and blood.

What I think we see is a man of honor and a man of love, who accepted God's call on his life to be the earthly father of the Incarnation. But if we do nothing less with our lives than what Joseph did in how he honored God's call, then we could do much worse as children of God.

3 comments:

Keith Brenton said...

As an adoptive dad, I have a lot of respect for Joseph.

Roger said...

Phil, i will try to get back to you with a lot of neat stuff written about Joseph as historical fact and as fictionalised in novels with te intent to stay as close to the historical facts as possible.

Jim Voorhies said...

This simple man has always seemed to me to embody faith and commitment. In an age where lesser men could have as easily stoned Mary to death for being pregnant, he chose to believe and to raise the Son of God as his own earthly child. I wonder if he thought that even Jesus ought to have free will about his fate on earth, and that's why Jesus was trained as a carpenter, just in case the Son of God thing didn't work out for him.

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