Keeping Christ in CHRISTmas – Day #13 A Message of Comfort and Joy (Matthew 1:18-25)
A Message of Comfort and Joy (Matthew 1:18-25)
Matthew 1:18-25, “Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily. But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name Jesus.”
Have you ever had it so hard to where you were puzzled on what gift to buy that certain special person? Perhaps curiosity has you captivated concerning the gift that has your name on it under the Christmas tree? Like the angels, God’s messengers, God’s Word has a way of calming us in the midst of a crisis. Joseph was not a man of haste but of Grace. The Bible says that he gave some time to think on those things that he and Mary had discussed. The man's heart had literally been ripped out, but he would not hastily react. We can find the peace of God for any situation if we allow the proper time for God to work. In watching people handle crises, too often they fail to allow the Lord to show up and show out, due to their hastiness. Psalm 25:9, “The meek will he guide in judgment: and the meek will he teach his way.”
1. The Message was Helpful. (Matthew 1:20)
Matthew 1:20, “But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.” Joseph was trying to ponder the situation and was allowing time for meditation when the angel of the Lord appeared in to him in a dream. The angel of the Lord had many appearances throughout the Bible, and especially in the Christmas story. We actually have various angels working within this setting to see that the events happen as God had previously planned and predicted. An angel is a messenger from God. The term "angel of the Lord" appears 12 times in the New Testament. It appears five times in the Christmas story and once when this angel appeared again to Joseph while they were down in Egypt. The angel appeared to Joseph and offered him a word of peace for his perplexity. The angel offered him a word of comfort for his confusion, and hope for helplessness. In speaking to Joseph in this dream, the angel was going to help Joseph move forward in this situation. The Lord understood the pain and perplexity that was running rampant through his mind. Joseph needed help quickly and God would use one of His angels to help him.
2. The Message was Insightful. (Matthew 1:21)
Matthew 1:21, “And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins.” The angel gave very clear insight into the events that were to occur with this family. The baby would be a boy, due to his previous prophecy. Isaiah 9:6-7, “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of [his] government and peace [there shall be] no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.” The angel not only announced that this baby would be a boy, but he also picked out the name for this baby. The couple would name this newborn boy Jesus. Joseph and Mary did not get the honor of picking the name of their baby. God said, “this Son is mine and I will choose His name.” This is wonderful and so defining, God's Son, and God's choosing. The bottom line of this proclamation is that Jesus would be born and he would have the ability to deliver people from sin. God allowed His Son to dwell among mankind, and in doing so, the God-Man would have the anointing of God and he would deliver the world from the grip of sin. This boy would make the difference in saving mankind.
3. The Message was Faithful. Matthew (1:22-23)
Matthew 1:22-23, “Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.” They did call the child Emmanuel because God did appear in the flesh to this world. In this, we see that God was tying all of the pieces together to make sure that every portion of prophecy was fulfilled concerning Jesus and His birth. The Bible is filled with various passages of scripture about Jesus Christ and every one of them has been fulfilled down to the smallest, seemingly insignificant detail. It would take a while to reveal all of the various scriptures dealing with facts about the life of the anointed one that would be born in the land of Judah from the house and linage of David. The Bible has never been proven wrong on any one of its various prophecies; contrary to this, the Bible has always been proven as absolutely right. Isaiah 7:14, “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” This prophecy had been revealed 740 years before the birth of Christ during the reign of Ahaz, king of Judah. The virgin did have a child. The child was a baby boy. The boy was God's Son. The Son would die for the sins of mankind. This was not done in vain, many would be saved.
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship with Christ.