18th Dec 2016 – Sleep for action

December 16, 2016 Pastor Matt Bishop

Being the fourth week of advent (already) it means we are getting close to celebrating the birth of Christ. Our gospel and sermon text today brings us up to the final stages of the time before Jesus’ birth where his earthly father Joseph receives some angelic Godly guidance in a dream. Upon his waking there is much action. This text has much to appreciate: another example of the unprecedented level of angelic activity around the time of Jesus’ birth; what it is to be righteous as Joseph is (Matthew 1:19); and how God’s definition of righteousness (Matthew 1:20) will challenge ours. But also sitting within this account is the way grace and response work together. What a great text in which to thank God through his Son for the gift of his righteousness, and to reflect on the difference that makes in our lives.