North Anderson Baptist Church
On the Way to Bethlehem “Joseph’s Dream”
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  • North Anderson Baptist Church
    2308 N Main St, Anderson, SC 29621, United States
    Sunday 10:30 AM
What a joy it is to worship together with brothers and sisters in the Lord. May we praise the Almighty God for His goodness toward all of us, AMEN!!!! We are today celebrating the special blessings we have from God as we think of Thanksgiving. There are so many things that we can be thankful for that we could spend all day talking about them. We are grateful for servants of God who want to help physically feed the church as true Christian fellowship, right from the word of God.
We are not going to have Communion today, but we are doing all the other parts of this scripture while we worship, pray and stay for a food fellowship after church today in celebrating how good God is to us. We have also received many blessings as a nation, which were born out of hardships and trials from a few brave souls during those harsh winters of Massachusetts in 1620-23.
Let’s not forget what great blessings God has given to us through those who sacrificed so much before us through the centuries.
This is the third message in our series of “On the Way to Bethlehem.” Today we will look at “Joseph’s Dream.”
1) The Dream vv. 13-15
a) The Magi - The Bible speaks of “they” in verse 13. “They” are the Magi from the previous verses. The Magi, or as we sometimes call them, the Three Kings, had their own dream and they were told to go home another way when they left Bethlehem and not go back to the wicked King Herod in Jerusalem to tell him the location and details of the child’s situation.
b) The Angel - Once again the angel of God visits Joseph in a “dream.” In this visit to Joseph from the angel of God, Joseph was told to gather his family and leave Bethlehem. In this visit not only was he told what to do, he was told to do it quickly! It was of great importance that Joseph comply with the angel’s instructions because the life of the child, the baby Jesus, was at risk. There was danger in the air; Baby Jesus was being sought by King Herod through his soldiers. Joseph heard the message from the angel and quickly obeyed and took the child and his mother, Mary, and fled to Egypt. Why did Herod want to destroy the Baby Jesus? Outside of being led by and influenced by satan himself, Herod was a sick man in mind and body and he was afraid of anyone who might challenge his throne. Even a little baby who was called the “King of the Jews” was a threat.
c) The Flight - Joseph moved fast to get his family out of Bethlehem. After packing they began the trip to go into Egypt. The trip might have been as far as two hundred plus miles for the little family with a donkey. Fortunately for them, there were lots of people who traveled between Israel and Egypt and the little family would not be too obvious to the soldiers of Herod. God revealed in the scripture that there were other reasons for the flight to Egypt by Joseph’s little family. One was for protection from a crazy, kill happy Herod and the other was to fulfill scriptural prophecy. Reading verse 15 of our passage we see, “where he stayed until the death of Herod. And so was fulfilled what the Lord had said through the prophet: “Out of Egypt I called my son.” The prophet that Matthew is referring to is Hosea. It is Hosea who tells us in 11:1, “When Israel was a child, I loved Him, and out of Egypt I called My Son.” Jesus’ life was about fulfilling prophecy about the Messiah, the Son of God.
2) The Madness of Herod, The Sorrow of Bethlehem - vv. 16-18
I don’t want to take away from “the dream of Joseph” but this is important to the story. Herod as crazy as he was desired to kill the one who was to be heir to his throne. At least that is what he thought. He was not scripturally minded and did not know that the Kingdom that this Child was to be King over was the spiritual lives of all mankind. So, he sought to destroy Him. Do your remember the passage in John 10:10?
Satan is the thief, and he wants to do that to you to, so beware of the thief! Herod sent his troops to the town of Bethlehem to kill all of the boys who were two years old or younger, for he believed that from the Magi, the Child could be as old as 2 years old. Our gracious and loving God knew this was going to happened because He placed the prophecy in the Word many years before the event in the book of Jeremiah, 31:15,
So babies died in the wake of Joseph taking his family to Egypt. And sadness filled Bethlehem as never before.
The wickedness that comes from the heart of the devil is displayed everywhere today, too. Who do you think all the suffering is attributed to and coming from? The people being killed for their religious beliefs, the suffering of the refugees throughout the world, the sorrow and trials of the disenfranchised and all those who are experiencing the results of the sin that came into the world is the activity of satan himself when God declares that is what he does, he comes to steal, kill and destroy! BUT remember Jesus says He comes to give you life and life more abundantly! You and I can live an abundant life now and forever more because we have trusted Jesus Christ personally as Lord and Savior. Won’t you do that today?
3) The Move To Nazareth vv. 19-23
The angel was true to his word. He returned to Joseph in another dream and told him to leave Egypt. I wonder who this angel was? His name is not mentioned. Was this the same angel that told Joseph to take Mary to be his wife? If so, God had sent this angel on one of the most important missions in his existence and in Christendom. I will explain later.
Again, the angel said “Get up!” He tells the news of Herod’s death and that it was safe go back to Israel. So they packed to go home to Israel but when they heard by way of another dream, that Archelaus, Herod’s son, was now ruling in the place of his father, they went to the region of Galilee, back to their hometown of Nazareth. Isn’t it interesting that what took place in the life of Jesus was ruled by scripture? There is not an Old Testament scripture that we know of that tells us that the Messiah would be a Nazarene but in the New Testament it is implied through those who talk of the Messiah that “He would be called a Nazarene.” (Matthew 1:22; Luke 1:26; John 1:45-46)
Let’s go back to the angel who appeared to Joseph four times. The unique timing for this angel’s message all had to do with saving the Messiah. God used this angel to save Mary from being stoned by the mob and having Joseph marry her and in turn then saving the baby Jesus in the womb of Mary. The second time the angel was used to save the young child Jesus from the soldiers of Herod who would have killed Him had the angel not come to Joseph in a dream. And the third and fourth time we have seen that the angel told Joseph to leave Egypt and go home to Nazareth to provide a place for Jesus to grow up as a young man, into the Messiah!
Take note now that if the angel had not come to Joseph several times, Jesus would have died but then note too, that if Joseph had not been obedient to God’s warning, Jesus would have died. We have much to give thanks for this Thanksgiving. Amen! Jesus might not have saved you and me if Joseph had not been obedient to the visits from God in a dream. Obedience is crucial to living the Christian life and being in the center of the will of God. Let’s not just recognize what has happened but begin to act ourselves in obedience to the commands of the Lord.
What a great reason to be thankful today!

Invitation

Dear friend if you are reading this by way of the internet please know that you are loved and cared for. If you have no relationship with God the Father through Jesus Christ His Son, then I invite you to trust Him by faith and receive Him as your personal Savior. Jesus Christ died on the cross for the sin of everyone in the world that they may have eternal life. All of us have sinned and all are guilty before Almighty God who made us to have fellowship with Him. But sin broke that ability to have a relationship and Jesus has restored the possibility to know God personally through His sacrifice. Please know that if you will seek God and turn from your sin and pray He will respond with His love and give to you a personal relationship through your belief in His Son and the sacrifice He made just for you. He will call for a change in your life too. He wants you to follow Him, not the world, not your own desires, but to follow Jesus. That brings a life change when you turn from sin and self and by faith believe in Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord. There is no Savior without Him being Lord of your life. Your willingness to change by following Him daily in your life will be the proof of your faith. When life throws its curves your way and you have found yourself broken by others or by the world let us introduce you to the only One who can help you…Jesus! You can write or call the office and we will follow up by contacting you. Office phone number is 864-225-2575 and the website address is www.northandersonbaptist.com and the physical address is 2308 N. Main St., Anderson, SC 29621. Dear friend if you are a believer and you have been touched by the Lord and you would like to talk to someone at the church just contact us in one of the ways you see above. If you are a believer and would like to talk about the church and your interest in being a part, please call and we can set up an appointment for you and get to know you. It would be a great pleasure to share our Lord’s love with you. This is a loving church and you are important to us, so please let us know what we can do for you in the Lord.Pastor Bill Rigsby

http://www.northandersonbaptist.com