Written by cycleguy on December 19th, 2018

No one likes to be forgotten. Unless, of course, they have done something wrong.  Then they want to hide and never be found!

But consider the Christmas story. A manger. A baby. A stable. A star. A long ride. A full inn. Mary. Shepherds. An angel (Gabriel). Zechariah. Elizabeth. Wise men. Bethlehem.

There seems to be one forgotten player in this drama. I’m sure you figured it out by now…Joseph. The man made a monumental decision and commitment and we forget him! He loved Mary so much he was willing “not to embarrass her but to divorce her quietly.” Some may think he was ashamed but keep in mind the difference in culture. Besides, you see his real heart come out after he heard the news the child was to be Messiah. Immanuel. Jesus. So he went against all odds; against the culture of his day; against everything his insides told him to do, and took Mary to be his wife.

But that’s it! That’s all we know except for a few side references. He showed his love for Mary and the baby and his  willingness to listen to God by taking them and heading off to Egypt. We see him when Jesus turns 12 and he hunts for him in the Temple.  But after that…ZERO. NADA. COME UP EMPTY.

What a noble man! This morning (Wednesday) during my New Morning Mercies reading, I read Isaiah 48:1-11 as supplemental reading. I was struck by verse 11: “For my own sake, for my own sake, I do it, for how should my name be profaned? My glory I will not give to another. (emphasis mine) God refuses to share His glory with anyone else. Not me. Not you. Not the most well-known pastor/preacher/evangelist/author/TV personality, etc. NO ONE ELSE!

So my question is this: can there be anyone more deserving of being noticed for not taking glory than Joseph? But its a catch-22 really. He would not have wanted known. He would have deflected the glory away from himself and toward the one who deserves it. Maybe I ought to take a hint?

There is a Christmas song we sang this past weekend and I have requested again for this coming Sunday’s Christmas Sunday service. It is this one and I can’t hardly think of a song more suited for a topic like this. And I would love to hear your thoughts.


10 Comments so far ↓

  1. Even though we don’t know many details about Joseph, we do know this: he was completely obedient to God in all he did. How many of us can claim that accolade? That he raised Jesus in such a way that He could actually fulfill His destiny as the Messiah makes Joseph the ultimate step-father. Note in A Trip, a Tryst and a Terror, I dedicate it to loving step-dads everywhere, and Joseph is listed there!
    Blessings, Bill!

  2. Ed Damas says:

    That’s a beautiful song.

    Perhaps Joseph wasn’t instrumental in Jesus’ upbringing. When you think about it, Mary and Joseph weren’t an actual part of Jesus’ ministry at all. After all, Jesus was obedient to God the Father, not really anyone on earth.

    • cycleguy says:

      I would disagree Ed on him being instrumental. We know he was there until he was at least 12. As a step-father (so to speak), he would have been involved Jesus’ life. Jesus would have been obedient to them because of this obedience to His Father. Just my thoughts.

  3. I have always figured he was one of those men who was faithful to God and obedience was build into his character. He was hand picked by the God of the Universe, yet he was totally human. I am sure he had human thoughts too, but the divine thoughts out weighed the human.

  4. Pam says:

    LOVE the song, Bill! It draws you in to join in worship.
    I have wondered what happened to Joseph later in life. Considering Jesus was known in his adult life as a carpenter and the son of the carpenter, it seems Joseph was around for quite a while. He just isn’t mentioned directly.

  5. floyd samons says:

    The key is the word used in that song’s first verse; Humble.

    It’s the pride of our fallen flesh that wants to be recognized, wants to have glory.

    The folks that received glory in this world couldn’t handle it. It wasn’t designed for them… and now they’re gone.