by Stephen Manley
I am a Jesus pusher!!! Joseph calculated his position of righteousness and came to an acceptable compromise. Mary is with child. Joseph is deeply aware that he is not the father. He will give her a private divorcement. It is the best answer in light of the fact there is no right answer. How can this situation be “undone?” There is no way out. This is the only thing his “righteousness” can tolerate and justify. It is the righteousness of the Old Covenant. If he forgives and marries her, he admits his guilt in her sin.
If Joseph is to follow the call of God from an angel of the Lord in the night hour, he must set aside his concept of the Old Covenant righteousness. He must embrace the New Covenant righteousness of love. Can he simply love Mary and accept her as she is? Can he embrace the child to be born as his own? Can all walls of prejudice and bitterness be broken down? Can he be redemptive through obedience to God’s call? Jesus cannot survive in Joseph’s life in the Old Testament righteousness. If Joseph maintains the Old Testament righteousness, the plan of God for redemption will be aborted. To respond to the Christ child is to respond to righteousness on a new level. It is the mind of Jesus! I am a Jesus pusher!!!