They Shall Call Him Emmanuel

This meditation is based on a passage for December 26, 2010 in the Daily Lectionary Year 1 from the Book of Common Worship for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (1993).

Text: Matthew 1:18-25

Reflection and Question: Before this Christmas recedes too far in our rearview mirror of life, it is good to remember Matthew’s take on the Christmas story, which highlights Joseph rather than Mary. Joseph is described as a righteous man. He is attentive to the angel who confirms in a dream that Mary is with child by the Holy Spirit and this child will fulfill Isaiah’s prophecy of the son to be named Emmanuel. It does not seem to bother Joseph or Matthew that the baby is to be named Jesus. I suppose, “God with us,” and “God saves” are one and the same in the coming of His son. Who is more important to you in the Christmas story, Mary or Joseph? Why?

Prayer: Spirit of the Living God, inspire us with the same strong faith that directed Joseph to marry Mary and to name her son, “Jesus,” as the angel commanded him to do. Sustain us, as you did Joseph, so that we may love and serve You. Amen.