Summary: How do we walk a godly life? It takes great courage to live a life that follows God and not ourselves. What are some of the characteristics of a person who lives a life of courage? This morning we are going to see how Joseph exemplified courage to foll
The Face of Courage - Joseph (Matthew 1:18-25)
The Faces of Christmas Series
What picture comes to mind when you think of the word courage?
I think there are a lot of people that think for a person to be courageous, they need to
be fearless or
do dangerous things or
perhaps that those with great courage need to be uncaring so that they can do whatever it takes to accomplish their purpose.
Well this morning, we want to find out if that is true and to do that we are going to look into the face of Courage
as we continue in our series, the Faces of Christmas, and see what it truly means to be courageous and learn how we might be courageous.
This morning, we will be looking at Joseph.
Joseph is an interesting person to look at among the people who were at the very first Christmas.
If we were to do a play of the nativity using the Bible as the script, Joseph is the only one without any lines. He says nothing.
But even though he has no words, there is much we can learn from him.
Turn with me to Matthew 1:18-25
We are going to read the account of Joseph learning about Mary’s pregnancy and the angel talking to him and Joseph’s response and see what it means to be a man of courage.
18 This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. 19 Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.
20 But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins."
22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23 "The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel"-which means, "God with us."
24 When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. 25 But he had no union with her until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus. (NIV)
Ok, as we look at Joseph here, nothing he does looks all that courageous.
I mean, come on, all he does is get married. How courageous is that?
Now I know some might argue that getting married can take an incredible amount of courage, but that is a sermon for another day.
But really what is so courageous?
Well, let’s consider the situation he is in for a moment.
The woman you are engaged to comes and tells you she is pregnant and you know that it is not your child.
Then she tells you some story about how God impregnated her and that she is still a virgin.
So not only, from your point of view, is she cheating on you, she is lying right to your face, and you think she is playing you for a fool.
Your friends and family say you should have her stoned or at the very minimum, you should divorce her (betrothal in that day was a binding contract)
Then you go to sleep and in your dream and an angel tells you that what Mary is saying is true and you should go ahead and marry her.
Here is where Satan puts in overtime.
Now while the text only tells us that Joseph was obedient to what the angel told him to do, I know there was much more going on in Joseph’s head through this.
How can I know that?
Because I have faced Satan enough times where he has tried to get me to doubt what I knew I should do.
Because I have counseled enough people where Satan has tried to get them to doubt what they knew they should do.
And because the Bible tells us that we are not to be unaware of Satan’s schemes (2 Corinthians 2:11)
Peter says in 1 Peter 5:8 “Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.”
Do you think that Satan is sitting around letting God’s plan of redemption go forward?