Thursday, December 19
Matthew 1:18–25
We all know about the Annunciation of Mary, when an angel told her she would bear a son. She responded positively in her famous Magnificat (Luke 1), submitting herself to be a servant of God. Joseph, on the other hand, did not respond so well to the news that Mary was pregnant. In fact, he sought ways to get out of his relationship with her. He needed an annunciation, too. He needed to hear from an angel that Mary’s pregnancy would not ruin his life.

Little did he know that as a member of the lineage of David, a descendant of Israel, he was the perfect earthly father for Jesus Christ. Joseph would have understood the words of the Lord through the prophet that pointed to Mary, the young woman who would give birth to a son and call him Emmanuel. Seven hundred years earlier, King Ahaz refused to accept any kind of sign from God. But Joseph listened to God; he had eyes to see and ears to hear. Joseph trusted the Lord, and unto us was born a son.

Lord, thank you for Joseph—that quiet guy about whom we know so little and yet without whom our salvation would not have taken place. He was “Abba” to the kid, Jesus. Thank you for dads this season. Amen.

From O Come, O Come Emmanuel, a publication of Luther Seminary. Used with permission. You may download O Come, O Come Emmanuel via this link. If you subscribe to Luther Seminary’s God Pause, you will receive O Come, O Come, Emmanuel in your email inbox each day of Advent. If you’re not a God Pause subscriber, sign up here and select “God Pause Daily Devotions.” You’ll continue to receive daily God Pause devotions, written by Luther Seminary alumni, after Advent ends.

Writers: Michael Binder ’17, Affiliate Faculty in Congregational Mission and Leadership; Amy Marga, Associate Professor of Systematic Theology. Theological Editor: James L. Boyce ’71, Professor Emeritus of New Testament and Greek. Cover photo by Elizabeth Explores on Unsplash.