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Scripture does not tell us the age of Mary when her son Jesus was born, thus, we don’t know her age at her betrothal. Assuming her to have been a mid to late teenager, and knowing the maturity level of such teenagers today, I can’t imagine her emotional bewilderment. For three months she carried a child within her, and surely she wondered how to handle this difficulty with her betrothed (Joseph). Did she satisfy herself in thinking that just as the angel told her, he would tell him? Yet, as we know, at a particular time when Joseph was contemplating what to do, the angel said nothing to him.

Presumably, Mary told Joseph the visit with the angel. Did Joseph find this too fantastic to believe? It appears that he might have because he was considering his options. He settled on one of those options he considered, putting Mary away quietly. Under the Law of Moses, Joseph surely knew, Mary was to be stoned (Deuteronomy 22:23-24). But maybe Mary expressed herself intensely enough that Joseph now had begun to wonder what really occurred. Perhaps he had doubts that she was guilty of infidelity, but he could not explain the pregnancy, and her explanation was beyond human experience, so he decided to quietly dismiss.

On the verge of doing this, the angel of the Lord speaks to Joseph in a dream. He is told not only is Mary innocent, but that the child in her womb was to be a child unlike any other in human history. Imagine being Joseph in the morning with this information! Joseph, being the righteous man he was, took Mary as his wife and did his part as a loving husband, loving father, and a faithful child of God.

The pressure, magnitude of the occasion, the perplexity, responsibility, and holiness surrounding all of this was placed directly on the shoulders of two humble people. This was certainly not the entry of Israel’s Messiah into the world expected! David Roper wrote, “The Jews were looking for a man of war to lead them to victory; God would send a helpless baby to bring them back to Him. Man wanted a ruler on an earthly throne; God would give them a child in a feeding trough. It was not man’s way, but it was God’s way (The Life of Christ, p. 63). RT