† Luke 1:39-55
Imagine how she must have protested to him about her innocence. Imagine Joseph’s
struggle. Most likely his father had arranged the marriage. He probably did not know her
terribly well at this point. She seemed to be sincere. But an angel? A virgin birth? No way. So he decides to divorce her quietly, the text says. A betrothal was a legal act in that day, so to end it required an act of divorce. That way he could minimize her suffering but maintain his status as a tsaddîyq, a righteous man.
Then in verse 20 God sends a message to Joseph: “After he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream.” Why did God make Joseph wait till after he had to think and struggle with all this stuff? Why couldn’t an angel come to him ahead of time and explain everything and remove that anxiety?