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If May N Joseph Made Another Choice

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I have placed Your ordinances before me. I cling to Your testimonies O LORD... Psalm 119:30-31

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If Mary N Joseph Made Another Choice
Prolife Meme. Courtesy of Human Coalition

What if Mary N Joseph had made another choice?

If Mary had not believed Gabriel who appeared to her, what then?

And what if Joseph had not listened to the Divine vision he had?

If they had reacted in unbelief, then what?

If Mary N Joseph had Made Another Choice
The View of Children Then and Today

Things were different in ancient times. Mary and Joseph’s people lived under foreign occupation. In Bible days, people saw children as blessings and gifts. Life expectancy wasn’t as high as today. Without technology and the advances of science, pregnancy complications were more common. Fewer children lived to see their fifth birthdays. Just like in Third World countries today. Ancient people saw children as blessings who would carry on their family names. Infertility and childlessness were great burdens. Today, in Western culture, it’s the reverse. So many among us see children as burdens and liabilities.

If Mary N Joseph Made Another Choice
Current Attitude Toward Children

Parents tend to say, “If I had to do it again, I would never have had kids.” So, when Mary and later, Joseph, learned she was pregnant, I don’t think the pregnancy itself was upsetting to them. No, it was probably the circumstances surrounding it and its effect on their relationship. In those days, getting pregnant outside of marriage was a crime. Though Mary was a virgin and her pregnancy was Spirit-conceived, her fiance probably had trouble processing and believing her. Who of us would believe such a thing? That a daughter got pregnant as a teen through the agency of an unseen God? It took a vision to give Joseph peace and hope. And we know how he responded.

If Mary and Joseph Made Another Choice
Crisis Pregnancies Then and Today

Mary’s pregnancy was a crisis pregnancy. She faced a situation where she could be stoned to death if the word got out about her pregnancy. No one would believe that she was pregnant by the Holy Spirit, as a virgin. They would assume that she had sexual intercourse with Joseph, and respond accordingly. Her supposed crime, punishable by death, would expose her to certain stoning as an adulteress. That was a crisis by any definition! Unplanned pregnancies, outside of marriage. Her pregnancy itself wouldn’t be a crime; it would be her supposed adultery would be the crime. If we read the full account in Matt. 1: 18-25, Luke 1: 25-26, and 2: 5-6, you know that she responded with faith. She chose her virginal, unwed, Spirit-conceived pregnancy, in spite of all the misunderstanding it could open her up to.

If Mary N Joseph Made Another Choice
Joseph’s Response

The unplanned pregnancy was no easier for Joseph. He had only one explanation for her unplanned pregnancy She had cheated on him! He no doubt was devastated. But he responded in faith when an angel came to him in a vision, and he married her and took in her baby. Both of them chose life for Jesus. They could have made another choice. Both of the could have backed out of their choice for life, but they persevered to the end. Anyone wonder why God chose them to give birth to and raise His Son? Other, richer or more educated couples may have made another choice.

If Mary N Joseph Made Another Choice
The Role of Women Then and Today

The role of women was different in ancient days. Women had limited rights. They didn’t work outside the home. Wives clearly understood their roles as subservient to their husbands. Women weren’t seen as equal to men. The ancient role of women was that of wife and mother. When girls reached puberty and got their first menstrual period, they were no longer children. They went from childhood to womanhood. Boys went from childhood to manhood around the same age. Mary is believed to have been in her early teens when the Holy Spirit got her pregnant. She wasn’t a baby having a baby. Girls at that time matured faster, as they were being prepared for homemaking, not for adolescence.

If Mary N Joseph Made Another CHoice
What if THey Lived Today?

What if Mary and Joseph had lived today, faced such a pregnancy today? Would anyone even believe Mary? Would her family be urging their “crazy” daughter to go to Planned Parenthood to end her pregnancy? Would they then get her in a psychiatric hospital? If they had visions in our day, would they have been “too educated” to believe and follow? One prominent Christian author notes: “If Jesus had been conceived today, we would have been ‘too kind’ to let him be born.” We have to admit that in our times, it’s easier to choose abortion because it’s so available. Abortion simply wasn’t available to people then. Mary and Joseph didn’t have pregnancy resource centers, either. They did have strong love for each other and solid faith in their God. And they must have had some supportive people, if not many. Like Mary’s cousin Elizabeth.

If Mary and Joseph had Made Another Choice
What This Means to Us

Mary’s and Joseph’s past choices for life mean much for us. First of all, without a human Jesus living and dying for us, none of us could be saved. Yes, if they had chosen differently, God could have gone through other means to bring Jesus into the world. But because of their faith and life-affirming choices, salvation is available to all of us. Second, Mary and Joseph challenge us with their examples of faith and courage and devotion to God, each other, and their family. Third, anyone facing an unplanned pregnancy can see, from Mary and Joseph, that even in the Bible days, people faced crisis situations and did well. Of course, they lived in another culture, but they faced their own set of challenges. They didn’t face any of the temptations of technology or secular humanism. But we didn’t deal with the hardships of living in a culture where women were seen as second-class citizens or people lived under foreign occupation. So, in a way, things equal out. One lesson from their story is that our choices have consequences not only for us, but for others. Are you glad they didn’t make another choice? I know I am!

Tell Congress to improve laws to make it easier for women to choose life for their babies! Sign or share this petition. Thank you.

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If Mary N Joseph Made Another Choice

The above prolife meme is by Human Coalition.

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