2000.) Ephesians 3 New Year Thoughts

December 30, 2016

eph3-how-deep

Ephesians 3:14-21   (NRSV)

Prayer for the Readers

May I suggest that we pray this prayer every day in 2017!

14For this reason I bow my knees before the Father,

Ephesians 3 kneeling man

Solomon prayed on his knees (1 Kings 8:54). Ezra prayed on his knees (Ezra 9:5). The Psalmist called us to kneel (Psalm 95:6). Daniel prayed on his knees (Daniel 6:10). People came to Jesus kneeling (Matthew 17:14, Matthew 20:20, Mark 1:40). Stephen prayed on his knees (Acts 7:60). Peter prayed on his knees (Acts 9:40). Paul prayed on his knees (Acts 20:36), and other early Christians prayed on their knees (Acts 21:5). Most importantly, Jesus prayed on His knees (Luke 22:41). The Bible has enough prayer not on the knees to show us that it isn’t required, but it also has enough prayer on the knees to show us that it is good.

–David Guzik

15from whom every family in heaven and on earth takes its name.  16I pray that, according to the riches of his glory, he may grant that you may be strengthened in your inner being with power through his Spirit, 17and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, as you are being rooted and grounded in love. 18I pray that you may have the power to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth,

"Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is."    --Ephesians 3:17-18 (New Living Translation)

 

The love of Jesus has dimensions and that it can be measured.

The love of Jesus has width. You can see how wide a river is by noticing how much it covers over. God’s river of love is so wide that it covers over my sin, and it covers over every circumstance of my life, so that all things work together for good. When I doubt His forgiveness or His providence, I am narrowing the mighty river of God’s love. His love is as wide as the world: For God so loved the world (John 3:16).

The love of Jesus has length. When considering the length of God’s love, ask yourself “When did the love of God start towards me? How long will it continue?” These truths measure the length of God’s love. Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love (Jeremiah 31:3).

The love of Jesus has depth. Philippians 2:7-8 tell us how deep the love of Jesus goes: but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. You can’t go lower than the death of the cross, and that is how deep the love of Jesus is for us.

The love of Jesus has height. To see the height of God’s love, ask yourself, “How high does it lift me?” It lifts me to heavenly places where I am seated with Christ. He has raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 2:6).

Can we really comprehend the width and length and depth and height of God’s love? To come to any understanding of the dimensions of God’s love, we must come to the cross. The cross pointed in four ways, essentially in every direction, because …

–God’s love is wide enough to include every person.
–God’s love is long enough to last through all eternity.
–God’s love is deep enough to reach the worst sinner.
–God’s love is high enough to take us to heaven.

–David Guzik

19and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. 20Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine, 21to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

eph3-god-is-able

Dear friends,

Today, the final blog of 2016, is also the 2000th DWELLING posting! Thank you for your support and readership over the years; I look forward to many chapters to come! I trust that this new year, as we are DWELLING in the Word together, will become one in which we all see more clearly how deep, high, wide, and long  the love of God in Christ truly is, forever and ever, Amen.

Love in Jesus,
Rebecca

_________________________

Music:

“The Love of God”  sung  HERE  by Mercy Me.  Frederich M. Lehman wrote the words in 1917 in Pasadena, California.

The love of God is greater far
Than tongue or pen can ever tell;
It goes beyond the highest star,
And reaches to the lowest hell;
The guilty pair, bowed down with care,
God gave His Son to win;
His erring child He reconciled,
And pardoned from his sin.

Could we with ink the oceans fill,
And were the skies of parchment made,
Were every stalk on earth a quill,
And every man a scribe by trade;
To write the love of God above
Would drain the oceans dry;
Nor could the scroll contain the whole,
Though stretched from sky to sky.

Oh, love of God, how rich and pure!
How measureless and strong!
It shall forevermore endure–
The saints’ and angels’ song.

_________________________

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Images courtesy of:
how wide & how long.    http://www.dailylifeverse.com/posts/images/2013/09/ephesians-3-18.jpg?s=full
man kneeling.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/ephesians-3-kneeling-man.gif?w=450
roots.    http://brandonacox.com/wp-content/uploads/Roots-Slide-Title.jpg
God is able.   https://pbs.twimg.com/media/B21gBwLCMAA456R.jpg

1999.) 1 Peter 2 Christmas Thoughts

December 29, 2016

1p2-christ-suffered

1 Peter 2:21-25   (NLT)

21 For God called you to do good, even if it means suffering, just as Christ suffered for you. He is your example, and you must follow in his steps.

“Seeing the Light” by Osnat Tzadok

from My Utmost for His Highest,
by Oswald Chambers

The Cross of Jesus is the revelation of God’s judgment on sin. Never tolerate the idea of martyrdom about the Cross of Jesus Christ. The Cross was a superb triumph in which the foundations of hell were shaken. There is nothing more certain in Time or Eternity than what Jesus Christ did on the Cross:  He switched the whole of the human race back into a right relationship with God. He made Redemption the basis of human life, that is, He made a way for every son of man to get into communion with God.

The centre of salvation is the Cross of Jesus, and the reason it is so easy to obtain salvation is because it cost God so much.

22 He never sinned,
nor ever deceived anyone.
23 He did not retaliate when he was insulted,
nor threaten revenge when he suffered.
He left his case in the hands of God,
who always judges fairly.
24 He personally carried our sins
in his body on the cross
so that we can be dead to sin
and live for what is right.
By his wounds
you are healed.
25 Once you were like sheep
who wandered away.
But now you have turned to your Shepherd,
the Guardian of your souls.

_________________________

Music:

HERE is a beautiful Celtic rendition of “The Lord’s My Shepherd.”

2. Shepherd - Simon Dewey

Psalm 23 (The Message)

God, my shepherd! I don’t need a thing.
You have bedded me down in lush meadows,
you find me quiet pools to drink from.
True to your word,
you let me catch my breath
and send me in the right direction.

Even when the way goes through
Death Valley,
I’m not afraid
when you walk at my side.
Your trusty shepherd’s crook
makes me feel secure.

You serve me a six-course dinner
right in front of my enemies.
You revive my drooping head;
my cup brims with blessing.

Your beauty and love chase after me
every day of my life.
I’m back home in the house of God
for the rest of my life.

_________________________

Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright © 1996, 2004 by Tyndale Charitable Trust. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers.

Images courtesy of:
 Christ suffered for you.   http://cdn.knowing-jesus.com/wp-content/uploads/1-Peter-2-22-You-Have-Been-Called-For-This-Purpose-beige-copy1.jpg
Osnat.    http://www.osnatfineart.com/art/abstract-paintings/5793-Seeing-the-Light.jsp
The Lord is My Shepherd by Simon Dewey.   http://ldsbookstore.com/Shared/Images/Product/The-Lord-Is-My-Shepherd-Print/the-lord-is-my-shepherd-simon-dewey.jpg

1998.) Philippians 2 Christmas Thoughts

December 28, 2016

The Face of Christ — detail from the Crucifixion from the Isenheim Altarpiece, c. 1512-16

Philippians 2:5-11 (NIV)

Imitating Christ’s Humility

A hymn of praise to Jesus!

5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:

6 Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
7 rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.

phil2-newborn

Jesus took “the form of a bond-servant being made in the likeness of men” (2:7b). Paul could have said that Jesus took on the form of a human being. That would be humiliation enough for God. There is a general Greek word for humanity that Paul could have used here, or he could have used a word that means a male as opposed to a female. But Paul uses neither of these. Instead, he chooses the more specific term doulos, which means “slave” or “bond-servant.” In other words, Jesus became a particular kind of man, a slave, the lowest position a person could become in the Roman world. He wasn’t born in a mansion or a king’s palace, but in a dirty stable among the animals. The Almighty God appeared on earth as a helpless human baby, needing to be fed and changed and taught to talk like any other child. The King of the Universe, the Lord of glory, voluntarily became a pauper for our sake. He had to borrow a place to be born, a boat to preach from, a place to sleep, a donkey to ride upon, an upper room to use for the last supper, and a tomb in which to be buried. He created the world but the world did not know Him. He was insulted, humiliated, and rejected by the people He made. The more you think about it, the more staggering it gets. Nothing in fiction is so fantastic as this truth of the Incarnation. Jesus went as low as He could possibly go. This means no matter what you go through, no matter how low you may get, you can never sink so far that Jesus cannot get under you and lift you up. He can identify with you in any situation, no matter how hard: poverty, loneliness, homelessness, rejection, you name it.

–Keith Krell (senior pastor of Fourth Memorial Church in Spokane, WA and associate professor of biblical exposition at Moody Bible Institute–Spokane)

8 And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!

phil2-nail-and-cross

Jesus descended the ladder and arrives at the bottom rung in 2:8. This verse reminds us that Jesus “humbled himself.” No one humbled Jesus; He willingly and graciously offered Himself to death. The implication is that you and I should do the same. As you read this verse, it is easy to sense Paul’s astonishment. He can’t believe that Jesus—God Himself—died! But to think that He experienced “even death on a cross” is mindboggling! The Romans reserved the agonizing death of crucifixion for slaves and foreigners, and the Jews viewed death on a cross as a curse from God. Crucifixion was a horrible way to die. The weight of the victim’s body hanging from his wrists caused his joints to dislocate as he tried to push up on his feet to breathe and keep from suffocating. Eventually, the victim was no longer able to push himself up and finally suffocated. Jesus endured that horrible trauma, not to mention the spikes through His wrists or the pain of the cross’ rough wood scraping against His back, shredded from the beating He had received with a cat-of-nine-tails. Jesus suffered as no one else, but it wasn’t the physical pain that caused Him the most suffering. Neither was it the taunting and humiliation He endured from His enemies as they watched Him die. The agony Jesus endured on the cross was the abandonment He suffered as God the Father turned His back on His son (Matt 27:46). The price that Jesus paid for humankind is staggering. Paul urges you to ponder the wonder of Jesus. As you reflect upon Him today, may you be overwhelmed by all this great God has accomplished for you.

–Keith Krell

9 Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,
10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.

Isaiah 43:11 (ESV)

I, I am the LORD,
   and besides me there is no savior.

_________________________

Music:

HERE  is Chris Tomlin and “Name of Jesus.”

_________________________

New International Version (NIV)   Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica

Images courtesy of:
The Face of Christ.  https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/222497257ethe-face-of-christ-detail-from-the-crucifixion-from-the-isenheim-altarpiece-circa-1512-16-posters255b1255d.jpg
obedience of Christ.  http://www.tracts.com/slave5.gif
baby boy.   http://www.courtneydickersonphotography.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/NolanWEB-3-of-271(pp_w850_h566).jpg
nail and cross.   http://www.klarionkall.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/nail-and-cross.jpg

1997.) Colossians 1 Christmas Thoughts

December 27, 2016

col1-supremacyofchrist

Colossians 1:15-23   (NIV)

The Supremacy of the Son of God

How would my life be different if I were to read this glorious passage every morning?

15 The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. 17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

18 And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. 19 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, 20and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

col1-blood

21 Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. 22 But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation— 23 if you continue in your faith, established and firm, and do not move from the hope held out in the gospel.

This is such a magnificent passage I am giving it to you again, this time in the J. B. Phillips translation:

Now Christ is the visible expression of the invisible God. He existed before creation began, for it was through him that every thing was made, whether spiritual or material, seen or unseen. Through him, and for him, also, were created power and dominion, ownership and authority. In fact, every single thing was created through, and for him. He is both the first principle and the upholding principle of the whole scheme of creation. And now he is the head of the body which is composed of all Christian people. Life from nothing began through him, and life from the dead began through him, and he is, therefore, justly called the Lord of all. It was in him that the full nature of God chose to live, and through him God planned to reconcile in his own person, as it were, everything on earth and everything in Heaven by virtue of the sacrifice of the cross.

And you yourselves, who were strangers to God, and, in fact, through the evil things you had done, his spiritual enemies, he has now reconciled through the death of his body on the cross, so that he might welcome you to his presence clean and pure, without blame or reproach. This reconciliation assumes, of course, that you maintain a firm position in the faith, and do not allow yourselves to be shifted away from the hope of the Gospel.

This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.

_________________________

Music:

HERE  is “Of the Father’s Love Begotten,” beautifully presented by the Concordia Theological Seminary (Fort Wayne) Kantorei.

Of the Father’s love begotten,
Ere the worlds began to be,
He is Alpha and Omega,
He the source, the ending He,
Of the things that are, that have been,
And that future years shall see,
Evermore and evermore!

At His Word the worlds were framèd;
He commanded; it was done:
Heaven and earth and depths of ocean
In their threefold order one;
All that grows beneath the shining
Of the moon and burning sun,
Evermore and evermore!

He is found in human fashion,
Death and sorrow here to know,
That the race of Adam’s children
Doomed by law to endless woe,
May not henceforth die and perish
In the dreadful gulf below,
Evermore and evermore!

Christ, to Thee with God the Father,
And, O Holy Ghost, to Thee,
Hymn and chant with high thanksgiving,
And unwearied praises be:
Honour, glory, and dominion,
And eternal victory,
Evermore and evermore!

_________________________

New International Version (NIV)   Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica

Images courtesy of:
Supremacy.  https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2016/12/5b501-supremacyofchrist.jpg
He existed before anything else.   https://newlifenarrabri.files.wordpress.com/2016/07/colossians.jpg?w=676
making peace through His blood.   http://www.dailylifeverse.com/posts/images/2015/03/colossians-1-20.jpg?s=full

1996.) John 1 Christmas Thoughts

December 26, 2016

john1-in-the-beginning

John 1:1-18    (NRSV)

The Word Became Flesh

In the beginning was the Word,

Genesis 1:1 (NIV)

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was in the beginning with God. 3All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being 4in him was life, and the life was the light of all people.

from Experiencing God Day-by-Day,
by Henry T. Blackaby and Richard Blackaby

LIFE AND LIGHT

When Jesus came to a world that was in bondage to darkness and dead in its sin, He came as light and life. His light dispelled sin’s darkness wherever He went, for the forces of evil could not withstand Him. The life He brought was abundant and free, available to all who were dead in their sin.

The fullness of life found in Christ dwells within you as a Christian (Colossians 1:27). The life Jesus offers is available to others through you. Don’t discount what you have to give to those who are hurting. Christ’s life within you is more than sufficient to meet every human need. When people encounter you, they encounter Christ within you. You do not know all the answers, but you have Someone within you who does! Be thankful God chooses to express Himself through you, giving light and life to those around you.

5The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.

6There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. 8He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. 9The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. 10He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. 11He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him. 12But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, 13who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.

john1-children-of-god

1 John 3:1 (NIV)

See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!

14And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.

john1-v14

15(John testified to him and cried out, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me ranks ahead of me because he was before me.’”) 16From his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.

john1-fullnessgrace

17The law indeed was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18No one has ever seen God. It is God the only Son, who is close to the Father’s heart, who has made him known.

_________________________

Music:

Today — the St. Olaf Choir performing “The Word Was God” by Rosephanye Powell.  Dr. Powell is an internationally recognized composer and arranger of sacred choral music and African-American spirituals.  As the nation’s most published African-American female composer of choral music, her works have been published by major choral music publishers and have been performed by top choirs all around the world.  She is also on the faculty at Auburn University.

Dr. Powell has said about this piece:  “It is one of those songs that I really believe was inspired by God.  In my time of study and meditation one day, I was just saying these words over and over again: ‘in the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the word was God.’  And as I continued to meditate upon that, all of a sudden a melody came and as the melody came I found myself unable to write fast enough to get all of the notes and the words down.  So I really feel like that was one that God compelled, as He did with the disciples and Moses who wrote the word, and I followed His leading.”

Enjoy it  HERE.

_________________________

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Images courtesy of:
John 1:1      http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/Inspirational-Images/large/John_1-1.jpg
manger.    https://saboteur365.files.wordpress.com/2015/12/john1_4.jpg
children of God.    https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/564x/f5/39/88/f53988990de6758b701bd8144a82e850.jpg
John 1:14.    http://img.heartlight.org/cards/g/john1_14.jpg
fullness of grace.    http://media.salemwebnetwork.com/ecards/fb_covers/cc_fullnessgrace_fb2.jpg

1995.) Luke 2 Christmas Thoughts

December 23, 2016
Sir Anthony Van Dyck (Flemish painter, 1599-1641), "Madonna della Paglia (Madonna of the Straw)" Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Antica, Rome, Italy.

Sir Anthony Van Dyck (Flemish painter, 1599-1641), “Madonna della Paglia (Madonna of the Straw)” Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Antica, Rome, Italy.

Luke 2:1-6 (NIV)

The Birth of Jesus

1In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2(This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3And everyone went to his own town to register. 4So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David.

_________________________

Music:

The text was written by Phillips Brooks (1835–1893), an Episcopal priest, rector of the Church of the Holy Trinity, Philadelphia. He was inspired by visiting the village of Bethlehem in 1865. Three years later, he wrote the poem for his church and his organist, Lewis Redner, added the music.

This has long been my favorite Christmas carol.  HERE  is “O Little Town of Bethlehem,” sung by the King’s College Choir.

_________________________

5He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.

“Arrival in Bethlehem” by Macha Chmakoff

6While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

    *     *     *     *     *

luk2-jesusaboveall

Colossians 1:15-20 (NLT)

Christ is the visible image of the invisible God.
He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation,
for through him God created everything
in the heavenly realms and on earth.
He made the things we can see
and the things we can’t see—
such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world.
Everything was created through him and for him.
He existed before anything else,
and he holds all creation together.
Christ is also the head of the church,
which is his body.
He is the beginning,
supreme over all who rise from the dead.
So he is first in everything.
For God in all his fullness
was pleased to live in Christ,
and through him God reconciled
everything to himself.
He made peace with everything in heaven and on earth.

_________________________

New International Version (NIV) Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica

Images courtesy of:
Van Dyck.    http://c300221.r21.cf1.rackcdn.com/booking-site-corsini-gallery-anton-van-dyck-madonna-of-the-straw-1399163092_b.jpg
Chmakoff.    http://www.chmakoff.com/Themes_bibliques/Nouveau_Testament/index.html
Jesus above all.   http://www.aimdigital.com/img/p/jesusaboveall.jpg

1994.) Matthew 1 Christmas Thoughts

December 22, 2016
"The Vision of St. Joseph" by James Tissot, 1894 (Brooklyn Museum, New York)

“The Vision of St. Joseph” by James Tissot, 1894 (Brooklyn Museum, New York)

Matthew 1:18-25   (NRSV)

The Birth of Jesus the Messiah

M1 Holy_Family

18Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. 19Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly.

20But just when he had resolved to do this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.”

22All this took place to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet: 23“Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel,” which means, “God is with us.”

“The greatest truth of the Scripture is that God is with us.”

–ascribed to John Wesley

24When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took her as his wife, 25but had no marital relations with her until she had borne a son; and he named him Jesus.

“St. Joseph” by Guido Reni, c. 1630 (Basilica dei Santi Giovanni e Paolo, Venice)

Reflection:

An important exegetical perspective that needs to be kept in mind is the Matthean text tells the story more from the angle of Joseph’s perspective, while the Lukan birth narrative tells the tale from the perspective of how things affected and were seen by Mary. What the two narratives have in common is interesting: 1) a birth in Bethlehem, even though the family is from Nazareth and Jesus would be called Jesus of Nazareth; 2) a virginal conception; 3) a pregnancy during the engagement period caused through the agency of the Holy Spirit; and 4) Joseph resolves to accept Jesus into his life and family, as is shown by subsequent events.

Some background information about early Jewish marriages helps the exposition of this text. In the first place, engagement in this culture was a formal contractual matter, usually decided on by the two fathers in question (i.e. it was an arranged marriage), and was, in fact, the first stage of the marriage itself, to be complete some months hence by the formal wedding ceremony. The reason Matthew says that Joseph had resolved to “divorce” a woman he was only engaged to, is because engagement then was a legally binding contract, unlike engagement in the West today.

Secondly, we need to understand in that patriarchal culture, the birth of the first born son was all important and crucial to the family line and property transfer. The fact Joseph is prepared to give up the right to sire his own first born son and accept and even name Jesus (Yeshua/Joshua means “Yahweh saves”) says a lot about the character of Joseph.

–Ben Witherington

_________________________

Music:

HERE  is a Joseph carol — “Joseph’s Lullaby”  by MercyMe.

_________________________

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Images courtesy of:
Tissot.    http://www.joyfulheart.com/christmas/tissot-christmas-childhood/tissot-the-vision-of-saint-joseph-546x729x72.jpg
olive wood Holy Family.    http://i00.i.aliimg.com/photo/v4/131605286/hand_made_olive_wood_Faceless_Holy_Family.jpg
Reni.   http://www.wga.hu/frames-e.html?/html/r/reni/2/joseph1.html