Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Matthew 1:18-25


In the opening chapters of Matthew we see that God does something miraculous to remedy sin. This is a complete surprise; it seems like a weird way to do things. God’s plan to redeem humanity is found in the birth of a human baby of all things!

And personally I feel sorry for Joseph in this story. Imagine you are in his shoes. Your fiancĂ©e whom you haven’t as the Bible so politely puts it “come together” with gets pregnant! What would you do? Initially Joseph is outraged and rightly so! But then as he learns more about the situation Joseph responds with a surprising humility.

A theologian named Tom Wright reflects on this passage and he invites us to be humble this lent as we read Scripture together. Wright says this:

“Reading the Bible without knowing in advance what God is going to say takes humility. Like Joseph, we may have to put our initial reactions on hold and be prepared to hear new words, to think new thoughts, and to live them out. We all come with our own questions, our own sorrows and frustrations, our own longings. God will deal with them in his own way, but he will do so as part of his own much larger and deeper purposes. Who knows what might happen, this year, if even a few of us were prepared to listen to God’s word in scripture in a new way, to share the humility of Joseph, and to find ourselves caught up in God’s rescue operation?”

(Excerpt from Tom Wright, Lent For Everyone: Matthew, Year A. London: SPCK, 2011, 2)

So as we journey through the Gospel of Matthew together let’s come humbly to the Scriptures and seek to hear God’s voice.

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