Pastor’s Letter – December 8, 2020 – Being a Just Man

Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily.

Matthew 1:19

Dear Church and Friends,

Today and next week we’ll break from the normal routine of going back and forth, from Old Testament to New Testament. Instead we’ll look at passages suggested by the Advent calendar on my refrigerator. You never know what your going to get when you open up one of those panels. (To see the calendar make sure you watch the video.)

Our Advent meditation is about Joseph. Matthew gives us the majority of information about him, and most importantly, his character. What kind of a man was he? Into whose home will the Lord of Heaven and Earth place his son. Let me just pick out a few things for us to consider.

  • He was an honorable man. When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. Joseph gave Mary a “ring and a date” as we might say. He proposed marriage and intended to honor her and her family with a wedding before they moved in together.
  • He was a just man. Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, His relationship with the Lord was in good order. This is the foundation for everything that comes after verse 19.
  • He tempered all he’d heard and all his actions toward Mary with mercy. and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily. Even though she apparently had sinned there was an option for him and her that didn’t include public shame.
  • He wasn’t rash but considered all the alternatives. But while he thought on these things, His relationship with the Lord is what gave him a compassionate heart and a cool head.
  • He was an obedient man. Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: He knew the voice of his master and when the angel said “take her” he resolved to do just that.He took Mary even in the face of public scorn for such a decision.
  • He was a disciplined man. And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS. The angel said nothing about abstaining from the marriage bed. Joseph must have considered keeping the holy thing holy more important that his pleasure.

Joseph was honorable, just, merciful, considerate, obedient, and disciplined. He was a model of true manhood and of the ideal Christian husband. Men this is for us. Let us walk toward our wives in the way of Joseph, son of Jacob, son of Matthan.

Music: O Come, O Come Emmanuel & Come Thou Long Expected Jesus by the Petersens.

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Prayer Requests: Please pray for the following.

  • Juan and Maria Rodriguez, Cayey, Puerto Rico. Juan Rodriguez planted Iglesia Bautista de Buena Vista in Cayey, Puerto Rico. “Please pray for the care and protection of my wife and children and that God will help me be a good husband and father. Pray we will see the glory of God in the church and that I can serve with integrity. Pray that I may see God’s grace in difficult moments and that I will not deviate toward vain things. Pray God will help me overcome sin and preach with authority the grace of the gospel. Pray the Lord’s church will be built up in faith, hope and love in eternity. May we be instruments of God in bringing the gospel to the nations. May the Lord God raise up pastors in our local church. Thank you for your prayers.”

Catechism: Craig’s Catechism (1581) [The Second Part of God’s Honor.]


Why is that, since some are better and some are worse?

All those will be judged evil, who are not the members of Christ.


But how can the quick be judged before they die?

Their sudden change will be instead of death for them.


But all flesh should return to the dust?

Ordinarily it is done so, but this is a special case.


What comfort do we have in the person of the Judge?

Our Savior, Advocate, and Mediator only shall be our Judge.

December 15th edition of the Pastor’s Letter will be the last one for 2020.

The Letter will return on January 5, 2021.

All my best.

Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:

Matthew 1:24

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The Bistro Ledger:

“What about the election?”

Photo by Pixabay on
A journal written under the stricture of a 15-minute timer.

Over the thanksgiving holiday a friend of mine asked me my opinion on the election and if I was worried one way or another.

I assured him that I was paying as little attention to things as possible. Not because I’m insensitive to the tides of political strife in the nation but because I know that the Lord sits enthroned over all the affairs of men. No matter what I think about Trump or Biden, no matter who I want to be in the White House, the Lord’s plan will prevail.

I told my friend that I try to keep worry and fear to a minimum. I know myself well enough over my 60 years to know how I can get rapped up in politics. It’s a blood sport with a high adrenaline count. I’ve also seen just how broken people can get over who wins and who loses.

Another factor in this period is the appearance of overwhelming fear. The fear of the virus has joined forces with the fear of a crumbling electoral system. People are in deep despair and dread.

The only remedy for this illness is a quiet dependence on the Lord. I read Psalm 4 Sunday last to my congregation. “I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, Lord, only makest me dwell in safety.” We need this kind of confident faith right now to combat the forces of fear arrayed against us.

As a pastor I must lead the way in that effort. It’s not enough for me to teach this way and not walk it myself. The Shepherd must lead in Biblical spirituality or the people never will. They might not anyway but if their pastor doesn’t then their chances of doing so are slim. If trust isn’t in the pulpit how can we expect it to be in the pew.

We talked about many aspects of the recent events in America ranging from the virus to the riots. All of these things we agreed to place in the hand of the Lord and trust him during this storm tossed time.

Times up!