“Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit.... 24 Then Joseph, being aroused from sleep, did as the angel of the Lord commanded him and took to him his wife, 25 and did not know her till she had brought forth her firstborn Son. And he called His name JESUS."
Consider here the purity and the mercy of Joseph. He maintains purity with Mary before their marriage. And instead of breaking off the marriage as he was planning, assuming her unfaithfulness, he listens to the angel and decides to marry her anyway. Decent neighbors in Nazareth would look down on him for this, not rejecting a brazen sinner. But he doesn’t put so much stake in being THOUGHT righteous, as in BEING righteous. There is one thing for us to confess today. Another comes from the key word “secretly.” You might wonder how anything could be kept “secret,” and it really means privately, as opposed to a public accusation and scandal. It was Joseph’s right at this point to accuse. Just like the Genesis Joseph found his brothers vulnerable to his accusation in Egypt, bowing before him. Both Josephs refrain from accusing, and instead show mercy. Do you find your heart accusing others ever? Often? Is there a certain person coming to your mind, even now?