Judging by the title, you should know who I’m talking about.
I mean, in the Nativity Joseph still does stuff, he gets mentioned a lot, the angels talk to him and all that, but I think Mary gets too much attention in the story. Let’s look at what Joseph did –
- Walked a long way on foot to Bethlehem to get his pregnant fiance somewhere to stay
- Tried to find somewhere to stay only to be kicked out of everywhere he tries
- Was forced to pick between his fiance getting killed or divorcing her
- Had to live with the fact that his son wasn’t his
When most people talk about the Nativity, they talk about Mary and Jesus the most. Joseph only seems to get mentioned in passing or when the story needs to talk about him. I actually think he’s a much more defined character than most of the characters in the Nativity. He believes in a simple way out of things and wants to solve problems in the least harmful way to the person involved. For example, when he finds out Mary is pregnant, instead of getting her killed, he tries to quietly divorce her and get her in the least harm. He is also patient, brave and willing to accept things he might not like. All Mary did was to give birth and look after Jesus (although this could be because the writers of the Gospel didn’t like women).
So overall, I think Joseph needs to be looked at more and given more attention in the story. I think we need to talk more of his side of the story, about what he has to go through, such as his humiliation of having a pregnant fiance and losing his friends and reputation. Oh well, 360 days till next Christmas. Let’s hope Joseph gets mentioned more!
Editor’s note: The original version of Why Joseph is underrated was published on 30th December 2013 in Ben Williams’s World.
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