25 Days of Christmas

Day 4- Joseph Was Not Just a Man—He Was a “Just” Man

Matthew 1:19 says that Joseph was a “just” man. Joseph was an upright man and he wanted to do what was right for Mary. I believe that he wanted to honor God and to honor Mary in every regard. 

The word “just” means: upright, blameless, righteous, conforming to God’s laws and to man’s laws as well. The word would describe someone who would live in accordance to rule or customs. A person who conforms to the divine standard of right that is made possible through justification and sanctification. 

Joseph wanted to do the right thing in regard to honoring Mary, especially in her current situation. In verse nineteen of Matthew chapter one, it tells us that Joseph didn’t want Mary to experience public humiliation, so he was going to make it a private matter. An issue that would be just between them and God. Joseph had a desire to the right thing, but later an Angel of the Lord would appear to him in a dream and confirm all that had taken place up until now.

What Can We Learn About Joseph: 

1. He was faithful to God

     a. By obeying Him

     b. By trusting Him

     c. By fulfilling His plan

2. He was faithful to Mary

     a. By believing her

     b. By trusting her 

     c. By honoring her

3. He was faithful to Jesus

     a. By naming Him

     b. By raising Him

     c. By releasing Him

25 Days of Christmas

Day 3- The Birth of Christ Was As Follows

Short Version

After a long list of lineage of the genealogy of Jesus Matthew gets into verse eighteen of Matthew chapter one telling is that Mary and Joseph were betrothed, but before they were married or had ever had sexual relations, Mary became pregnant with a child from the Holy Spirit.

Matthew is telling us at the get go that Jesus was born of an immaculate conception. He is also revealing the hearts and lives of who Mary and Joseph truly were as people. The were integral people with hearts after God.

Could you imagine Mary having to explain this to Joseph? Out a lone anyone else. She would have probably been frightened, perplexed and perhaps even embarrassed. Nonetheless, they had to trust one another and most of all, they had to trust God.

3 Key Take Aways:

  1. You can trust God’s plan, even when it doesn’t make sense.
  2. God’s plan will always include the most unlikely candidates.
  3. The plan that God purposes will come to pass if we are obedient and take Him at His word.

25 Days of Christmas

Day 3- The Birth of Christ Was As Follows

Long Version 

After a lengthy discourse on the family lineage and the genealogy of Jesus, Matthew breaks into an interesting introductory verse in Matthew 1:18 about Christ being born to Mary. He also tells us that Mary was betrothed to Joseph. 

Nevertheless, here’s where it gets interesting… he then tells us that before they came together, she was found with a child from the Holy Spirit. In other words, before Mary and Joseph had ever had sexual relations and before they would ever became husband and wife—she became pregnant with the promise of God.

Can you imagine? I mean can you imagine explaining to anyone what had just happened. Mary had to have been frightened, perplexed and perhaps even embarrassed. She was still a virgin and her and Joseph were both only engaged, yet she was going to be visibly and physically pregnant! She would soon have a baby bump and not be married. And, even crazier yet, she had never had sexual relations with anyone.

You know the story. An Angel visited her, the Holy Spirit overshadowed her, and she became impregnated with a promise from God. But Matthew doesn’t choose to start out with this narrative. Instead, he comes out of the gate swinging with a story about Mary and Joseph being engaged, never knowing one another in an intimate and sexual manner and now she is with  Child from the Holy Spirit. 

It’s an interesting narrative, but it lets us know that Jesus was conceived of the Holy Spirit and that His birth will come from an immaculate conception. It will also paints a picture of the kind of people that Mary and Joseph truly were. And, it will show how they had to live by faith and trust the plan of God, even when others didn’t understand, and even we they themselves didn’t fully understand either.

You see, Mary and Joseph knew the truth and they waited in anticipation for the promised outcome. However, others who didn’t know the divine truth about the miraculous conception, probably assumed the worst about Mary and Joseph. Nonetheless, they came together, they trusted God, and they trusted one another. They waited in faith while the plan of God would be fulfilled with Mary giving birth to Jesus, the promised Messiah. #trustwhatyouknow

3 Key Take Aways:

  1. You can trust God’s plan, even when it doesn’t make sense.
  2. God’s plan will always include the most unlikely candidates.
  3. The plan that God purposes will come to pass if we are obedient and take Him at His word.

25 Days of Christmas

Day 2- He is the Messiah

Matthew concludes the genealogy of Jesus by grouping them into three groups of fourteen generations. He says in Matthew 1:17: “So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations, from David until the captivity in Babylon are 14 generations, and from the captivity in Babylon until the Christ *(the promised Messiah) are fourteen generations.”

I don’t believe Matthew set out to make an inclusive or exhaustive list, but instead he wanted to point out the fact that Jesus was indeed from the lineage of David, and in fact, affirming that Jesus was the promised Messiah. 

So many findings, opinions and comparisons come from this verse and some, although not satisfying in defining the explanation, are still very symbolic and truly applicable in fulfillment of the context.

Here’s what I mean by that: The word of God is true, the promises of God are always fulfilled and the timing of God is divinely impeccable when it comes to fulfilling the plan of God. Therefore, Jesus was to come from the lineage of David, and He did.

According to the Jewish practice of gematria, the giving of a numeric value to the consonants in a word, David’s name would add to D + V + D or 4 + 6 + 4 = 14, and David is the 14th name on the list in this genealogy that is referenced in Matthew’s gospel. David is also mentioned twice.

Also, in Daniel 9:24–27, it states that seventy weeks of years, or four-hundred and ninety years, would pass between the restoration of Jerusalem and the coming of the messiah. And it did.

Since generations were commonly placed at thirty-five years, this means exactly fourteen generations passed between the restoration of Jerusalem and the coming of Jesus, the Messiah. Which would equal seventy weeks of years, or four-hundred and ninety years. *(14×35=490). 

And lastly, the third group of fourteen generations mentioned in Matthew 1:17 would end with Joseph—the one who would take Mary to be his wife and the one who would also name Jesus and be His earthly father.

So here’s the takeaway: The timing of God is perfect and the promises of God will continue full-circle, until they are ultimately fulfilled in God through Christ.

25 Days of Christmas

Day 1- Where He Came From

We know that Jesus came from above, but Matthew reveals an even more practical insight through penning Jesus’ lineage to start out his gospel in the book of Matthew verses 1-16.

This lineage demonstrates a continuation and an intentional connection of the Old Testament to Jesus. It also reveals the royal biblical lineage through the connection of David and Abraham. Lastly, it reveals all of humanity and its faults and flaws—through the various people mentioned in this colorful lineage and genealogy of Jesus. Thus revealing God’s heart for humanity and Him becoming one of us, to save us from our sin and ourselves.

3 Take Aways:

  1. Jesus was from above, but no one was beneath Him.
  2. Jesus lineage was divinely biblical, yet noticeably human.
  3. Jesus spanned the gaps of time and humanity to reach us all!


Choice- everything begins and ends with a choice. Adam and Eve the beginning of all creation and humanity had a choice. Do you ever wish you had a chance to redo a choice knowing what you know now? Me too! Do you think Adam and Eve wish the could have a do over? Everything thing that has happened in my life comes down to a choice! Either a choice that I have made or a choice that someone else has made. So what do you do? You can’t go back and change what has been done— you can’t make right every wrong, only God can do that! The only thing you have the power over is right now and what happens from here on out. So what do you do? You pray for the grace and wisdom to steward the choices you have been given, with courage and wisdom. And, you trust God to some how work it all for your good! I always think about Joseph when it comes to God working all things for my good. Joseph had a choice. He could have pouted in the pit, pleaded his case at Potiphar’s house and protested at the prison. Instead he was able to promise provision to the people that had caused him problems all while living in the promise and provision of the palace! It was his posture and his choice that dictated the outcome for him and for everyone else. You have a choice— you can get bitter or you can better. And you have a choice— you can take matters into your own hands or— you can trust God!

    How You Resolve Conflict Properly:

    Talk to the other person with respect. Don’t be condescending, critical or condemning. And don’t use sarcasm or cynicism to prove a point. Show mutual respect and treat them how you would want to be treated.

    Don’t yell or raise your voice the entire time. You are usually better to lower your voice than you are to continuously raise your voice. The louder you yell, the louder the other person gets. Learn to lower your voice and it will deescalate the emotions involved and help dictate the mood of the conversation. It will also help determine what’s being said and what’s being heard.

    Don’t constantly interrupt the other person. First of all, if you are constantly interrupting, you are probably not truly listening and if you are not truly listening, then you are not showing respect and it will be more difficult and take longer to come to a mutual resolve.

    Show mutual appreciation and consideration for the other person by how you listen and by what you say— and in the way that you say it. Don’t use sarcasm, roll your eyes or sigh. Be kind and considerate in your gestures, facial expressions and tone of voice.

    Don’t insult or name call or constantly blame the other person. When you are in a conflict with someone it is so easy to talk down to them— but don’t do it!

    Learn to compromise. Compromise is about give and take. It’s about giving up and gaining back. You can’t always be right and you won’t always get what you want in regard to relational resolutions. Compromise is about forfeiting what you want— for what’s best.

    Always be working toward a mutual resolve. It’s not about winning the argument— it’s about settling the disagreement and coming to a mutual resolve that’s good for everyone involved. 

    12 Ways to Live in Freedom

    Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage. Galatians 5:1

    1. Learn to forgive and realize that you have already been forgiven.

    “In prayer there is a connection between what God does and what you do. You can’t get forgiveness from God, for instance, without also forgiving others.” 

    Matt. 6:14-15 MSG

    Bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.

    Col. 3:13 TEV

    2. Learn to have constructive conversations.

    You must put away every kind of bitterness, anger, wrath, quarreling, and evil, slanderous talk. Instead, a be kind to one another, compassionate, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ also forgave you. Ephesians 4:31 NET 

    Words kill, words give life;

    they’re either poison or fruit– you choose.

    Prov. 18:21 MSG

    3. Learn to encourage others.

    The sovereign Lord has given me the capacity to be his spokesman,

    so that I know how to help the weary.

    He wakes me up every morning;

    he makes me alert so I can listen attentively as disciples do. Is. 50:4 NET

    When we get together, I want to encourage you in your faith, but I also want to be encouraged by yours.

    Rom. 1:12 NLT

    “So continue encouraging each other and building each other up, just like you are doing already.” 1 Thessalonians‬ ‭5:11‬ ‭CEB‬‬

    4. Learn the art of not complaining [especially about the things that you permit].

    Do all things without grumbling or disputing, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world. Phil. 2:14-15 ESV

    5. Learn to keep your word and to be honest.

    Don’t lie to each other, for you have stripped off your old sinful nature and all its wicked deeds. Col. 3:9 NLT

    A good name is more desirable than great wealth. Respect is better than silver or gold. Prov. 22:1 GWT

    6. Learn to be kind.

    May God pour out His love so it fills your lives and splashes over on everyone around you, just as it does from us to you.

    I Thess. 3:12

    “Don’t let any foul words come out of your mouth. Only say what is helpful when it is needed for building up the community so that it benefits those who hear what you say. Put aside all bitterness, losing your temper, anger, shouting, and slander, along with every other evil. Be kind, compassionate, and forgiving to each other, in the same way God forgave you in Christ.” Ephesians‬ ‭4:29, 31-32‬ ‭CEB‬‬

    7. Learn to live out “the golden rule”. [do unto others as you would have them do to you.]

    Be good friends who love deeply; practice playing second fiddle. Rom. 12:10 MSG

    “Therefore, you should treat people in the same way that you want people to treat you.” Matthew‬ ‭7:12‬ ‭CEB‬

    Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Each of you should be concerned not only about your own interests, but about the interests of others as well. You should have the same attitude toward one another that Christ Jesus had toward you. Phil. 2:3-5 ESV

    So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.

    Gal. 6:10 ESV

    8. Learn to NOT argue about things that don’t matter or to feed an argumentative spirit. 

    We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ. II Cor. 10:5 ESV

    If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.

    Romans 12:18 NIV

    9. Learn to resolve unresolved issues. 

    Go ahead and be angry. You do well to be angry– but don’t use your anger as fuel for revenge. And don’t stay angry. Don’t go to bed angry. Don’t give the Devil that kind of foothold in your life.

    Eph. 4:26-27 MSG

    10. Learn all the facts before you come to an assumption or conclusion.

    When the jailer woke and saw that the prison doors were open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself, supposing that the prisoners had escaped. Acts 16:27 ESV

    11. Learn to build bridges and not walls. 

    Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it.

    Prov. 3:27 ESV

    “And neither will I walk off and leave you. That would be a sin against God! I’m staying right here at my post praying for you and teaching you the good and right way to live.” I Sam. 12:23 MSG

    Be gentle with one another, sensitive. Forgive one another as quickly and thoroughly as God in Christ forgave you.

    Eph. 4:23 MSG 

    12. Learn to concentrate on what truly matters. 

    For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. Col. 3:3 NLT

    Throw yourselves into the work of the Master, confident that nothing you do for him is a waste of time or effort. 

    I Corinthians 15:58

    You do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin. James 4:14-17 ESV