Called To Be Emmanuel

“Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. …Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the LORD by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the LORD had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name Jesus.” 

Matthew 1-18-25

In this week’s lesson we are informed about the birth of Jesus Christ. Mary has been espoused to Joseph. Though they had not yet come together, she is found to be with child of the Holy Ghost. Mary had previously been told by the angel Gabriel that she would soon bear a child. Certainly this to most others would seem to be impossible, for she was a virgin. Undoubtedly Joseph was faced with many questions and concerns. Being a just man Joseph decides to call off the engagement quietly. The justice of that day concerning adultery, could have called for Mary’s execution. But Joseph was seen by God as a merciful man. Surely Joseph was the right man called to be Jesus’ adopted father. The Lord speaks to Joseph through a dream. Saying “Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife; for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.” (20) What a shocker it must have been for him to find out this divine news. The Old testament prophecy’s were being fulfilled. The Messiah was to come from the line of David. Nazareth though unlikely a place was his origin. Nothing is left to chance. Joseph is even instructed on what his son’s name should be. His name would be Jesus. The prophecies of Isaiah proclaim that a virgin shall be with child and shall bring forth a son, and they will call his name Emmanuel. This name means God with us. Oh how significant that is, because truly Jesus was God with us. Joseph does what God requires from all of us, to be obedient. Joseph listens to the angel of the Lord, and took Mary as his wife. Matthew 1:25tells us that he knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son, and he called his name Jesus. What an extraordinarily beautiful story of a man, his wife, and God’s miraculous call.When God asks us to do something we need to obediently follow his calling. Joseph and Mary would learn something that we all need to know. God knows about us more than we know about ourselves. Though they both came from humble and insignificant means, God uses whomever he chooses. What we may see as little, God can use for great things.

Elder Carl Simms