SR025: God’s Sovereignty, Joseph and Mary

Dec 18

On the Sojourn Radio podcast, today Ken and Mike talk about the Connecticut Elementary School Shooting, Charles Wesley, Brigham Young, Westboro Baptist Church, Mormon Women in Pants, and Part 3 of our sermon series Joseph and Mary’s perspective of Jesus’ birth.

Current Events/News

  • Newtown, Conn., elementary school Shooting: Adam Lanza, age 20, described as a troubled gunman, killed 20 children and six adults in a elementary school last Friday.  Police do not believe he was medicated to treat mental illness — which might not have been formally diagnosed.

  • Biblical Worldview:

    • It is not about guns, it’s about hearts

    • Romans 3.23 “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”

    • Jeremiah 17:9 “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?”

This Week in Church History

December 18, 1707: Charles Wesley, who founded Methodism with his brother John, is born in England. A celebrated and prolific hymn writer, his “Hark the Herald Angels Sing” and “Lo, He Comes” are widely sung this time of year (see issue 69: Charles and John Wesley)

This Week in LDS History

165 years ago today – Dec 18, 1847 [Brigham Young Sermon] The law of God in tithing is binding on this Church, without any alteration, and the people will be tithed on the coming of Jesus.

[Source: The Complete Discourses of Brigham Young, Ed. Richard S. Van Wagoner, Smith-Pettit Foundation, Salt Lake City (2009)]

Christian Quote of the Week

Charles Wesley: Faith, mighty faith, the promise sees, And looks to God alone; Laughs at impossibilities, And cries it shall be done.

Mormon Quote of the Week

Brigham Young: “I don’t care about my character here on earth.I don’t care about what other people think or say about me, all I care about is my standing before the Lord.”

Theological News

Fred Phelps’ son condemns Westboro’s plan to picket Newtown funerals
by Kimberly Winston  | December 17, 2012

(RNS) The estranged son of a Kansas pastor famous for protesting the funerals of soldiers and AIDS victims has condemned his family’s plans to picket the funerals of the 26 people — including 20 children — who were killed when a gunman stormed a Connecticut elementary school.

In the wake of Friday’s massacre in Newtown, Conn., members of Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kan., posted Twitter messages saying they would picket outside Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown. The messages provided no information on the time of the planned picketing.

“Westboro ‘God hates Fags’ Baptist Church is planning to picket at Sandy Hook, to praise ‘God’s judgment,’” was posted by Margie Phelps, the daughter of Westboro leader Fred Phelps Sr. Her sister, Shirley Phelps-Roper, tweeted Saturday that the group would “sing praise to God for the glory of his work in executing his judgment.”

Church members also released a video titled “God Sent the Shooter,” in which members state that the shootings were God’s retribution for gay marriage.

LDS News

Group pushes for LDS women to wear pants to church

By Stephanie Grimes | December 12th, 2012 @ 9:42pm

SALT LAKE CITY — A group of feminist members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are urging women to wear pants to church services on Sunday as a show of equality.

It is the first act of a group called All Enlisted, which describes itself as a “direct action group for Mormon women to advocate for equality within our faith.”

The group stated on the Facebook page associated with the event that they are pushing for the LDS church to acknowledge the similarities between men and women.

“We believe that much of the cultural, structural, and even doctrinal inequality that persists in the LDS church today stems from the church’s reliance on – and enforcement of – rigid gender roles that bear no relationship to reality,” a statement on the page said.

Stephanie Lauritzen, who organized the group, said the movement is about having a choice.

“We’re doing this not because we think women have to wear pants or should wear pants but that women can wear pants,” she said.

LDS church spokesman Scott Trotter said clothing is not meant to be the focus of church attendance.

“Attending Church is about worship and learning to be followers of Jesus Christ. Generally Church members are encouraged to wear their best clothing as a sign of respect for the Savior, but we don’t counsel people beyond that.”

The LDS church teaches that men and women fulfill different responsibilities in the church, but are “co-equals in this life.” Women in the church belong to and lead the church’s Relief Society, which was developed as a part of the early church to help care for those in need.

Mormon women receive Facebook threats over pants
By John M. Glionna Los Angeles Times Saturday December 15, 2012 6:57 AM

Mormon feminists have hit on fashion to promote demands for a larger say in church affairs: This Sunday is “Wear Pants to Church Day,” intended as a show of solidarity for women’s religious rights. Their sartorial flair has triggered some support — along with some bitter anger.
The event, which was being promoted on a special Facebook page, had drawn more than 1,200 supporters, a relative handful compared with the 6 million practicing Mormons nationwide. But by Thursday evening, the original page had been taken down and a new one posted, with this note:
“The event page got taken down due to the death threats. This is a page to further the cause but without a face attached. This page is for women who are choosing to wear pants this next Sunday.”
A screen shot of the original page included this comment:
“every single person who is a minority activist should be shot .. in the face . point blank . GET OVER YOURSELVES ..”



Series Review

God’s Perspective on Jesus’ Birth

  • God’s birth announcement
  • He Loves God the Son
  • He Love Us as Well
  • Jesus was born with a purpose
  • We are born with a purpose
  • He Sent His Son to Die for Us.
  • Our sin is so egregious that it demanded the high price of Jesus, the perfect sacrifice

Satan’s perspective on Jesus’ birth

  • Satan is a created sinful being, Jesus is his master-tried to ruin God’s plan
  • Jesus lived the perfect life that we couldn’t
  • Jesus died the perfect sacrificial lamb
  • Jesus rose the conqueror of sin and death
  • Jesus reigns

Joseph and Mary’s Perspective of Jesus’ Birth

Matthew 1.18-25 Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet:

“Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel” (which means, God with us). When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him: he took his wife, but knew her not until she had given birth to a son. And he called his name Jesus.

Why did God Choose Joseph and Mary?

  • God’s sovereignty
  • Joseph and Mary are rightful heirs to the throne (genealogies)
    • Matthew = Abraham to Mary
    • Luke = Joseph to God
    • could have chosen anyone


  • Found out that his fiance was pregnant
  • Could have had her stoned
    • Matthew 1:19-20 And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly.  But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.
    • Deuteronomy 22.23-24 “If there is a betrothed virgin, and a man meets her in the city and lies with her, then you shall bring them both out to the gate of that city, and you shall stone them to death with stones, the young woman because she did not cry for help though she was in the city, and the man because he violated his neighbor’s wife. So you shall purge the evil from your midst.
  • Visited by an Angel
  • He adopts Jesus as his own


  • Virgin Birth
    • Why was it a necessity?
      • Prophecy
        • Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
          • Immanuel = God with Us
      • 100% Man 100% God (Necessarily sufficient for our salvation)
  • Transmission of the Sin Nature- that’s why it had to be a virgin birth-sin comes from man
    • Psalm 51:5 Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.
    • Ephesians 2:2-3 in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience—among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.
    • Romans 5:12 Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned

God provided for Mary and Joseph

The plan of God

  • Jesus had to be born to a virgin from the line of David both fully God and fully man
  • Jesus lived the perfect sinless life that we are unable to
  • Only the sacrifice of Jesus is sufficient to cover our sins
  • God is still sovereign, still has a plan, and we are covered by his grace through what Jesus did on the cross
  • This gives us hope!

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