It was a confusing situation for Joseph, to say the least! How would you react? Your soon-to-be wife approaches you and tells you that she is pregnant but not to worry because it was a miraculous event that caused the pregnancy. Would you believe her? What would be your choice?
Think of Joseph’s dilemma.
- He knew he was not the father
- She did not have opportunity of an affair, being in the company of Zacharias while she visited them regarding news of Elizabeth’s pregnancy (Luke 1).
- Yet she was pregnant.
His reaction was to consider quietly separating from her. The laws were different from our modern laws. To be engaged for marriage was binding and could only be broken through legal means, but he wanted to be sure not to make an example out of her.
The scriptures say, “While he thought about these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream…” (Matthew 1:20). The angel repeated to Joseph what Mary surely already told him–this was a miraculous conception. It would have taken something like this to convince him, or anyone for that matter, that his fiancé’s pregnancy was not from an affair. And this is the evidence that something DID happen. Notice what he was told about Jesus by the angel.
- The Holy Spirit created this pregnancy.
- Mary would give birth to a Son and they were to name Him Jesus or “Savior”.
- Matthew quoted Isaiah to show fulfillment of prophecy (and Joseph would have known of the prophecy).
Something caused Joseph to accept Mary’s explanation of things. The angel’s words, the prophecy, the visit Mary made to her relatives–these pieces of evidence all worked together to convince him of the truth. He took this boy, Jesus, and raised Him as his own. He was convinced.
The Bible is full of these small, circumstantial evidences that add up to truth, but we must be open to them to make the right choice.
What is your choice?
Sometimes we don’t believe the truth simply because we do not allow ourselves to be convinced of it. It happens to the best of us. In his classic debate with Antony Flew, Thomas Warren rightly asked what it would take to convince Flew that God was real. That’s a great question. Flew demonstrated that he was unwilling to make the right choice.
While we are not to blindly accept ideas without testing them, sometimes we have to look at all of the evidence and make a decision. It’s easy to always be skeptical of an idea, and if we are unwilling to learn and admit we could be wrong, we will never make it in life. We must learn to make the right choice in difficult situations.
Where are you? Maybe you’re at a point where you keep fighting against an idea that won’t go away. Are you facing a difficult choice? Are you open to the truth even if it seems unlikely? Remember, love truth and accept it when you find it. That means we have to be open to ideas. If the idea is wrong, reject it, but if it is truth, we are better off accepting it.