Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Tim. 2:15

King James AV1611

Lessons For Ladies
This Series was taught by Mrs. James Modlish

Lesson Fifteen

A Love Story Twice Told




Most women like to hear a love story, especially around Valentine's Day. It seems no matter how old we are, there is that little something inside of us that craves "romance." Unfortunately, our husbands progress at the same momentum toward the "unromantic!" At any rate, to help appease that yearning for a good, old fashioned love story, I am going to tell you one today. The names of the individuals in our little saga will remain nameless for the time being.

Once in a small town far away from here there lived a young man of modest means and average appearance. He was the kind of fellow that you would pass on the street and later not be able to even recall that you saw him. A man of reasonable skill, he was able to support himself in a field that would certainly not gain him any notoriety, but would provide a decent income.

Also in this small town was a young girl who was most probably the type that you would take a second glance at if you passed her on the street, for she had a countenance and demeanor that was sure to draw attention. The inner beauty she possessed surpassed the outward, and it was more than likely that that was what attracted our young man to her in the first place. There were without a doubt many attractive women in the vicinity, and he had certainly been giving them an "investigative" study, but this particular one stood out in a unique and intriguing way from all the rest. In other words, he was smitten!

According to the custom of the day, he made plans to court this beauty and to eventually win her love. Always a gentleman, he brought her small gifts, talked with her about her hopes and dreams, and in the only way he knew, did his best to make her feel like the center of his universe. (This definitely sounds like a fairy tale, doesn't it!) But most importantly, they talked of their love for God and their mutual desire to serve Him in whatever way He chose.

As time passed, this young man realized that this wonderful girl was the one with whom he wanted to spend the rest of his life, and with the approval of her parents and her consent, they became engaged. The age-old custom of making wedding plans began in earnest with all concerned pitching in with enthusiasm.

However, this beautiful scenario was about to take a sharp turn to the right. This precious treasure, the tight of his life, gave him some news that left him devastated and confused. She was going to have a baby. Now, having conducted himself in the most proper and reserved way throughout their courtship, he knew the child was not his. His heart breaking, he searched for direction as to what steps to take, certain that he would never recover from this blow.

Days passed as he struggled with indecision and grief; he prayed for God's guidance; he played out a multitude of options in his mind. Finally, he came to the conclusion that his only choice was to break off the engagement, but to do it in such a way as would bring the least embarrassment to his beloved and her family. With a heavy heart, he prepared to make his way to their home and break the news.

What this man did not reckon on was what happened next even as he prepared to make the one visit he never in his life dreamed he would have to make. The stress and sadness of what he was enduring finally took its toll on him, and night of sleeplessness descended upon him as he fell to the couch in utter emotional and physical fatigue. Steep came mercifully fast but did not go undisturbed for he was soon absorbed in a dream… one that convinced him that he should take a completely different course of action than the one planned. Upon awakening, he felt a jubilation and exilerance he had not experienced since the news of the impending birth.

Grabbing his coat, he rushed out of his house and made his way to the home of the young woman with the speed and deliverance of a man who know exactly what his next move will be. Politely but impatiently knocking on the door, he was greeted by this young beauty who could stilt make his heart skip a beat. Looking at her serene countenance, he almost, for a moment, sensed that she was not at all surprised to see him, and might have actually expected to hear the words not yet uttered from his lips. Without fanfare or dramatics, he looked at her, got down on one knee, and grasping her hands said, "Wilt you marry me?" And this lovely girl who, in everyone else's eyes, should have the weight of the world on her shoulders, calmly gazed at him and said simply, "Yes."

The marriage took place, and they awaited the birth of the child; our fine young man took gentle care of his bride and even aided in the delivery of this child who was not his, but whom he had come to love and anticipate.

The years went by as they added to their family children of their own, but it was always evident to these two that the firstborn was different and uniquely special from the others. To that end, they were dedicated to the adherence of the laws of their God and made sure this son was exposed to their religion and traditions from the beginning of his life.

The young man in our story became an old man and eventually died; the young woman became aged, and although she outlived her husband,she, too, passed away; but for all her years she remembered the complete devotion and love she was shown by this extraordinary man who was her husband. It would only be surpassed by the extraordinary love and sacrifice of the Man who was her son.

I would imagine that a young man of such fine character would be of interest to some of you who are searching for a husband for yourself, or perhaps for your daughter or even your granddaughter. Let's be honest, in today's world it is extremely difficult to find young men (or women, for that matter) with morals, a work ethic, and a desire to serve the Lord. It may be difficult, but that doesn't make it impossible. The "knight in shining armour" might actually still exist! And as you may have already guessed, the man in our story existed, too, albeit a very long time ago. But the traits he exhibited are still desired today and display a standard by which we can judge a man. Let's take a few minutes to discover who the man was and what made him the one God selected for a unique position.


1. Luke 1:27 - Joseph came from a good family -the house of David.

(a). No matter how you slice it, you marry the entire family!

(b). The more common denominators you have with a potential spouse, the more likely the marriage will succeed, i.e. interests, economic standards, values.

(c). It was essential that Joseph come from the line of David.

2. Matt. 1:18-19 - Joseph was a just man and discreet one.

(a). He probably had every right to throw a public fit about what would certainty be perceived about his fiancee.

(b). He was making plans to try to protect Mary's reputation as much as possible.

(c). An honorable husband will do everything in his power to keep his wife from being dishonored or humiliated even if it means his own discomfort.

3. Matt. 1:20-24 - Joseph was obedient to the command of the Lord and believed the unbelievable.

(a). Being a good Jew, Joseph was aware of the teaching of the Scriptures regarding the coming Messiah, but I am sure it never occurred to him that he would have such a integral part in it.

(b). Apparently not hesitating, he married Mary, no further explanation needed by him.

(c). As women, we are instructed to be obedient to our husbands, and if you choose one who seeks to be obedient in his own right to the Lord, your life will be much easier!

4. Matt. 1:25 - Joseph had learned to control his own desires.

(a). It was essential that Mary remain a virgin to fulfill the prophesy in (Isa. 7:14) which is repeated in

(Matt. 1:23). 

(b). Joseph was no doubt familiar with the book of Isaiah; he needed no further instruction!
(c). A true man is one who has learned to keep his body under submission in a world where that is almost a foreign concept.

5. Luke 2:4-5 - Joseph obeyed the laws of the land.

(a). The law decreed that they go to the city of David to pay their taxes, and Joseph obeyed the law.

(b). This may seem insignificant, but think about it. Years later Jesus Himself would tell the Pharisees, who were trying to trap Him, "'Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's; and unto God the things which are God's."

(c). Just as obedience to God will make your life more pleasant., so will obedience to the law of the land, providing it does not contradict God's law.

6. Luke 2 - Joseph was dedicated to following God's laws.

(a). The law of Moses was still followed precisely in Joseph's world, and it required that the mate child be circumcised the eighth day and that he be dedicated to the Lord.

(b). In addition, they made the appropriate sacrifice since they were a poor family a pair of turtledoves or pigeons.

(c). Note also that Joseph didn't insist on naming the boy, Joseph, Jr. He named Him as he had been told to do by the angel in his dream.

(d). A man dedicated to obeying God's plan will treat you with the utmost respect and consideration for a man is instructed to love you as much as Christ loves the church. Now that's a deal if you can find it!!

7. Luke 2:41-52 - Joseph was the best possible earthly father to the Son of God.

(a). In (vs. 41) we discover that he made sure Jesus had a consistent spiritual upbringing, that He was exposed to the traditions of their religion from an early age.

(b). In (vs. 49) Jesus makes His first statement concerning His heavenly Father, and there is no record that Joseph rebuked Him for what could be perceived to be an insult to him. In fact, (vs. 50) tells us that both parents were puzzled by His statement.

(c). However, the familiar words of (v. 52) confirms the parental guide Joseph was in the life of this child who was not his own… "Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man."


As far as I am concerned, the world can paint whatever picture it wants of a romantic, sensitive man, but in my estimation, we have a very vivid and accurate one right here in the person of a man who has faded into obscurity only to be remembered as a figure in a nativity scene once a year.


Joseph had to be a wonderful individual with exceptional traits .... God used him to be the earthly father of His precious Son.

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