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A Letter to a Son of David

Dear Joseph,

Recently, I wrote a letter to your wife, Mary. I hope you’re okay with that since you’re both in Glory now anyway, unmarried like the rest and awaiting that great marriage supper of the Lamb.

I imagine that calling Nazareth of Galilee home must not have helped you in popularity contests. What was it like to be a part of the long and destitute lineage of kings, a great, great, great… grandson of David? Did you know that some people in my era advertise that their “boss is a Jewish carpenter”? Seems cute, I know, but they weren’t talking about you. What was it like to apprentice young Yeshua as a carpenter who is both your Lord and mine?

Our Holy Book speaks of you as a “just man” (Matthew 1:19). Seems to me that was made possible because of your Stepson (we call him Jesus). You must have taken the God of the Covenant seriously and trusted his promises. In so many ways, I want to be a righteous man like you, Joseph, and most like your Lord and mine.

How did you feel when Mary first told you about the pregnancy? Did you run away in anger? Levi tells us in his Gospel that you decided to annul your betrothal “quietly” (Matthew 1:19). You took the noble road when you could have legally shamed her or demanded her stoning. Admirable! Sleep must have been hard not knowing the truth—until, of course, the angel came and cleared it up. What must have it been like to endure the stigma of engagement to a pregnant woman?

How manly did you feel in not finding a respectable place for Mary to birth Jesus? Were you scared knowing the local king was coming to destroy baby Yeshua (Matthew 2:13)? How did you provide for mother and child as refugees in Egypt?

I think you and Mary would identify with one of our Christmas movies about a kid getting left at home accidentally. One difference would be, however, is that the child of your story is real and worthy of worshiping as your Lord and mine. Shalom.

Posted by Will Pareja with