But Joseph was a different kind of man. He most certainly was devastated but even in his profound shame and hurt, he decided he would handle things quietly with the divorce. He could’ve made it public so the whole town would know the baby wasn’t his, but he knew this would bring dishonor to Mary. She had probably already suffered a lot as her name meant “bitter.”
The Lord tested Joseph. It was only AFTER he made the decision to divorce her quietly that he had an angelic counter. Then he proved himself again. He entered into her shame.
Who in their right mind would believe this baby was from the Spirit of God? No one. By marrying her he was claiming the baby as his own, and thus bringing disgrace to himself and his family. It would’ve been so much easier to choose a different path. But he embraced disgrace for her and for the God he served.
And then it got worse. Not only did he continue to stay with her through this trial by fire, but a census was mandated and he had to return to the small-town village of his birth with his pregnant fiance. This was the ultimate of shame. There was no room in the inn “for them” says the Scriptures. How could you bring home your tramp girlfriend pregnant?
From day one Joseph honored Mary. He also embraced profound disgrace for the cause of the gospel. Truly this man was a hero among men. And women. Oh that a generation of Joseph’s would rise up on the earth.