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Matthew 1:24-25

The Fruit of Obedience

24 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: 25 And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.

What does it take to get your attention? Some people will respond to the word of God with very little encouragement. Others do not even think of Him until they encounter some kind of desperate situation. Joseph was a righteous man and a merciful and loving man, yet he evidently did not believe Mary's story about how she became pregnant. He was going to divorce her in a private manner, in order to protect her reputation. Let's be honest! This was not the typical story that you would hear from a pregnant unmarried woman.

God always has a way to get our attention. In this case He would appear to Joseph in a dream as "the angel of the Lord." Dreaming about a matter may not be the way that you or I could be convinced of its truths. Regardless of how real the dream seems at the time, once we wake up and realize it is only a dream we set it aside and give it little credibility. Joseph's dream, however, must have been much more than what we would imagine. Somehow, God made real contact with Joseph. The dream was only the medium. Nevertheless, He got Joseph's attention.

When He was raised from his sleep, he immediately obeyed God and took Mary to be his wife. Furthermore, he respected the holiness of her situation and did not defile that holiness until after the child was born. He named the child Jesus.

A direct correlation exists between our obedience to God and the manner in which He involves us in His work. There are few assignments that we would want to trust to a disobedient person. God's work is so much more important than our own, yet we expect Him to involve us in positive ways even when we are disobedient. God simply does not work that way.

Joseph obeyed and called His name JESUS, Yahweh saves. God involved both Joseph and Mary in Jesus' work of salvation when they raised the child. He used them, because they were obedient; and they obeyed, because they knew He would use them.

Before The Throne:

Pray that God will help you be obedient and that He will help you to see even minor mistakes that you might make. Ask Him to use you, to use your ministry, and to involve your family and your church in His work. Pray for His guidance as you try to do discern His will for your life.

For Further Study:

(v.24) ** did. Gen 6:22; Gen 7:5; Gen 22:2-3; Exod 40:16, 19, 25, 27, 32; 2Kgs 5:11-14; John 2:5-8; John 15:14; Heb 11:7-8, 24-31; Jas 2:21-26;

(v.25) ** she. Exod 13:2; Exod 22:29; Luke 2:7; Rom 8:29; ** and he. Lu 2:21;


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