December 21, 2017
TEXT: When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him: he took his wife, but knew her not until she had given birth to a Son. And he called His name Jesus. (Matthew 1:24-25)
Obedience is not a fashionable virtue. People are suspicious of it, talking about robots and mind control. We make jokes about it with references to dog obedience school. We make heroes out of rebels and those who "did it my way."
And yet, none of us likes to be disobeyed. When a child, or even a dog, disobeys us, we understand perfectly well why obedience matters. "Don't run into the street." "Look both ways." "Don't play with the fire." "Come here, now!" Obedience makes the world run smoothly. Disobedience ends up in pain and even death.
As human beings, we should know this well. Our first ancestors disobeyed God in the beginning, and we have been paying the price for it ever since. Sin, trouble, war, death, disaster upon disaster-if only we had listened to God! None of this needed to happen.
Thank God, Joseph listened. He woke up, got up, and brought Mary home to be his wife. She in turn obeyed the Lord by bearing and raising Jesus our Savior. And His obedience is the source of our salvation-though He was in the form of God, (Christ) did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
Therefore God has highly exalted Him and bestowed on Him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (Philippians 2:6-11)
THE PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for obeying the Father and becoming our Savior. Let me in turn obey You with faith and love. Amen.