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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

12/23/10 Matthew 1:20-21 Jesus the Savior Comes

20 But after he had considered 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 home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”

(Joseph's Dream by Rembrandt 1645)

Thoughts: Joseph had ordinary fear, but God has extraordinary plans for him.  The angel forecast that the baby would not be a girl, but a boy (no ultrasound in those days).  They were to call the baby Jesus- which means "The Lord saves."  The term "Savior" is not given to a general or ruler by the Jews- but this is reserved only for God.  Only God can forgive sins (Mark 2:7).  The prophecy is that Jesus will save his people from their sins.  Not save them from their political enemies; not save them from discomfort; but from slavery to their sins.  In order for Jesus to save us, we need to be a part of his people.  We do this by being adopted into his family by faith. 

Prayer: Lord, My Savior, save me from my sins.  May I be a part of your people by faith, hope, and love.

John Calvin Abridged: We see here how God helps His people in a timely fashion.  When He appears to have forgotten us, we are still under His eye.  When His help is delayed it is for our own advantage.  The Lord speaks to us in dreams (Nbrs. 12:6-8) but they differ from natural dreams in that they have a feeling of certainty about them.  God's dreams do not have to do with the cares or problems of life, but with the testimony of the Holy Spirit. ("A Strange Way To Save the World" by 4Him).

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