Today’s guest writer is a Catholic speaker with a great love of working with teens and a passion for bringing Christ to the world through the media. John Yep was a seminarian for over 10 years and holds a Master’s Degree in Philosophy from the Pontifical University Regina Apostolorum in Rome and a Master’s Degree in Theology from St. John’s Seminary in Camarillo, CA. With a gift of sharing God’s love and theological reflections in an easy to understand and engaging way, he’s written this piece on St. Joseph’s pure heart and what a beautiful and integral role it played in the life of Jesus.
“Like Father, Like Son”
This expression applies in a special way to Jesus and his dad. While volumes have been written about the relationship of Jesus to his heavenly Father as the first person in the Blessed Trinity, it is not so common to draw out the relation with Jesus and his earthly father Joseph. We must work harder to see the relation of Joseph to Jesus because of the dearth of information afforded to us by the holy writers of the Bible.
So what was the heart of Joseph like? Why was it that this man was chosen to be the one who raised Jesus? The secret to Joseph was his heart. It was a pure heart; pure as an unblemished lamb!
The Lamb of God
We know that one of the most important titles of Jesus is, “The LAMB of God who takes away the sins of the World.” It would be fair to say that Jesus learned to be a lamb by watching his father Joseph. Joseph was pure, gentle, but strong; just like a lamb. His silence in the Gospels has never ever been taken for weakness. He was a man who lived his life in complete acceptance of the will of God.
He was in his own way a lamb who helped to take away the sins of the world. He didn’t do that as the primary lamb, a role reserved to his son that was God. Rather, he did so as a co-redeemer, much the same way that any of us can help Christ in saving souls through our free cooperation with grace. By the constant unwavering yes of Joseph to the will of God, Joseph became a lamb who helped take away the sins of the world. And the way that he did it spoke volumes to his son who would follow suit. Joseph opened not his mouth. He was a silent figure in the background whose humility and service constantly taught Jesus what it meant to be a lamb of God.
God’s Chosen Father
God doesn’t make mistakes. He chose this man Joseph to be the model of masculinity for his only beloved Son, Jesus. He saw Joseph as capable of teaching his son everything he would need to know to be that man of quiet strength that would carry love to its extremes on the hill of Calvary. It’s no wonder that thousands of Catholic men down through the centuries have turned to Joseph for help as the Caelitum Joseph, decus atque nostrae!…….Joseph, the praise and glory of the heavens!
He possesses that pure heart which wants to shower graces upon us here on earth as we fight to reach our eternal goal. As we fight for that pristine virtue let us look no further than to the pure heart of St. Joseph. He was there for Jesus; he’ll be there for us!