While much attention has been given to Mary, the mother of Jesus, much less has been given to her husband. Please listen to the podcast on Joseph (15 mins).
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- There are 13 Josephs in the Bible.
- This Joseph is mentioned 13x in the NT: Matt 1:16, 18-19, 24; 2:13, 19; Luke 1:27; 2:4, 16; 3:23; 4:22; John 1:45; 6:42
- Joseph was among the top 5 popular names in Jesus’ day.
- He is generally given insufficient attention.
Matt 1:18-21... 24-25
- Joseph is descended from the royal line of Judah.
- Joseph is a just man.
- Even after the inexplicable pregnancy of his betrothed, he is determined to protect Mary’s honor.
- He obeys the angelic message.
- The marriage is not consummated, for whatever reason, until after the birth of Jesus. (Other sons and a few daughters follow.)
- The Magi meet Mary and Jesus.
- Is Joseph there? He isn't mentioned.
- Again, Joseph obeys.
- Herod the Great dies in 4 BC.
- Yet again, Joseph obeys God. Joseph is sort of like Noah—no speaking part (until after the deluge).
- In fear—or common sense?—he withdraws not to Judea (in the south), but to Galilee (in the north).
Luke 2:4-5, 16
- c. 7 AD.
- The shepherds greet Joseph and Mary.
- Neither she nor Joseph understand what Jesus means when he says “my father’s house.” Or maybe they get it, but only partially.
- Mary is depicted as the thoughtful one.
- This is the last time we meet Joseph.
Joseph’s death and his other children
- Presumably he died before Jesus’ public ministry began—yet perhaps not too soon after Luke 2.
- In Matthew 13 we find that Joseph and Mary had at least 8 children in all. While it is possible all had been born by the time of the events of Luke 2, this seems unlikely.
What is admirable about Joseph
- Somewhat surprisingly, Joseph has no speaking role. (This is in contrast to the some of the rather humorous apocryphal gospels.) Although, in terms of airtime, Mary eclipses Joseph, yet still he is a worth learning about. Of course in a sense he does answer the Lord when spoken to. He answers with his actions—same as you and me.
- He is an obedient man.
- He obeys the authorities.
- He observes Torah, respecting and obeying the Scriptures.
- Joseph also does as instructed in several angelic dreams.
- Joseph is a man of honour. He protects his wife.