Capernaum - the Synagogue
The white marble synagogue in this photograph is not the one that Jesus taught in, but it was built on top of an earlier one from the first half of the 1st century AD - the one that almost certainly saw Jesus of Nazareth. The original synagogue was of black basalt, with gray marble columns and a cobblestone floor.
Jesus performed many miracle in Capernaum, and chose four of his disciples from among its population: Peter, Andrew and the two sons of Zebedee, James and John. Perhaps it was here that the crippled woman was healed by Jesus - the text says he 'called her over', presumably from the benches along the wall of the synagogue.
Joseph and his supposed family home, local Place of worship-Synagogue, and his workshop. compare his humble inheritance of this earth, with the building prior to these, and see the difference.
Home for the rich, and Synagogue in a wealthy location
Mary and Joseph's supposed Marriage.
WHY MARRIAGE AND MARRIAGE VOWS? Genesis chapter 2: 21-24; Genesis chapter 24: 1-8; 10:10-16(The Saint James' Version of the Bible).
It might surprise you why we start our Christmas message with the topic above-MARRIAGE! We want to see if marriage is of God's pleasure for man on earth or not, and then find out from the Scriptures, some points to support this. Our first Bible portion above(Gen. 2:21-24) talks about the First Institution of Marriage, and the First `MINISTER` to conduct Marriage. After God had finished making the world and pronuncing everything He made `GOOD`, God saw the need to make man to enjoy the fruit of His labour. God then Created the first man and called him `Adam`. The God of Creation is A Merciful and Compassionate God, and must have seen that Adam needed a `Help-mate` to keep him constant company. So God Made a WOMAN, out of Adam's rib and laid her down beside Adam whilst he was sleeping. So, God Ordained that, Marriage should be a union between A MAN AND A WOMAN.
WHO ARE ELIGIBLE TO BE JOINED IN MARRIAGE?
We have already stated above that, a man and a woman is the ONLY fitted UNION FOR MARRIAGE. But the man and the woman have to be the ones that have never been married, or they have been married, but their ex-spouse is no longer alive. But in case any of them is/was married to a wrong person, for example, married someone who once had married but later divorced, or someone who had ignorantly been married to a homosexual, and later comes to know the truth that he or she is in a wrong marriage, and therefore decides to end the wrong marraige, or someone who is marrying to someone whose first husband or wife is still alive; Anybody who finds himself or herself in this category, can come out and be married to a right eligible spouse, if he or she wants to be right in the Sight of God, and receives the blessings of God into his or her marriage. God designed marriage to be for life, and although the Bible gives allowance for rightly married couples to separate if they can no more live together, the Bible condemns any one of them to re-marry to another person as long as their first partner is still alive. It could be the Wisdom of God to grant separation(in the case that one of them is unfaithful to the other-in adultery), but not to marry another person, because once any of them remarries to another person and soon finds comfort with the new person, he or she may never consider reconcilation to the first partner. But as long as each one of them remains unmarried to another partner, there is hope for reconcilation back to the first love, especially if it was on just an adultery, which the guilty one comes out with confession to the partner, and geniunely repenting, with a promise/vow not to do so again!
WHAT ARE THE STEPS TO CONSIDER WHEN PLANNING TO GET MARRIED?
This brings us to our second Reading protion which talks about the Assignment that Abraham gave to his servant(please read the portion). Here, Abraham knew the importance of getting a wife from a family/country that worships The True God, and retains His FEAR in their heart. So, he sent his servant to such country. The servant here did not know who would be such a family, although Abraham had told him the country. But through faith, Abraham trusted that God would bring the right lady from the right family to the servant. But the servant himself had to play his part. HE HAD TO PRAY, WHEN HE GOT TO THE COUNTRY. He sat down by a well and made that prayer. Read and see for yourself, how God answered his prayer. We have just established THREE MAJOR things to do when desiring to marry.
1)ASK GOD IF IT IS THE RIGHT TIME TO MARRY, AND HAVE GOOD INTENTIONS FOR THE MARRIAGE TO SUCCEED. This will include you checking yourself if you are a GOOD person, such as you are longging to marry. You can't be a wicked or crafty person, but you aim to marry a good and simple someone. God is a God of Judgement, He will give you according to the intent of your heart/life. He can bless a wicked man or woman with a good spouse, no doubt, but he will have to look into such a wicked hear. If He sees that the wicked person will repent of his or her wickedness and flees from his wicked way, when the good spouse would show him or her, the right way to go. God can even use the wicked spouse to purify the good spouse, to become even better. God is so Wise and compassionate, when dealing with man. With all the THREE steps that we list here to be taken before marriage, once in a while, God does turn it the other way around, for His children. For instant, Moses, that great man of God, married a woman from a theathen nation, who did not worship the God of Israel- The True God, Jehovah. God did not condemn Moses for doing so, rather, struck Moses' sister with leprosy when she spoke against Moses for marrying a woman outside Israel Nation. Again, the Bible recorded another case, where God told His devoted Prophet to go and marry an harlot, and the prophet obeyed despite the fact that he knew that the people that were looking unto him as the true prophet of God, would murmur against him once he got married to this harlot. But he decided to `OBEY GOD RATHER THAN MAN`. A Christian, or anybody who wants to please God and receives His blessings, here and after this world, has ONLY ONE DUTY TO FOLLOW THROUGH IN THIS LIFE, AND THAT IS, TO `FEAR GOD AND TO KEEP HIS COMMANDMENTS`. That is the Bible's RECOMMENDATION for man. If anybody has this mind, he will NEVER miss the Road to Heaven, despite what may come to him, or what Satan may open his eyes to see along the way. It is ONLY God that has the details of life, and man is admonished to stay at the level of man.
2) The second step to take when considering marriage, is to HAVE IN YOUR HEART TO DO WHAT GOD WANTS YOU TO DO-MARRY SOMEONE WHO HAS THE FEAR OF GOD IN HIM/HER LIKE YOU.
3)The third step is to PRAY TO GOD TO BRING THE RIGHT PERSON TO YOU.
PRACTISING THE STEPS ABOVE WITH THE LIFE OF MARY/JOSEPH:
The Bible tells us that Joseph was a GOOD man. He was faithfully attending his local Synagogue and must have been helping out there as the Lord would have directed him. Mary too, was a member of the Fold too. But it is NOT enough to just be attending a Church, it is everything to be among the `CHURCH OF GOD-THE BRIDE OF CHRIST THAT ARE PATIENTLY WAITING FOR THE BRIDEGROOM, WITHOUT SIN`. Mary was among the Bridegroom, for the Bible says that, she was a VIRGIN, even at that age, ready to be married by an earthly man.
JOSEPH GOT ENGAGED TO MARY IN AN OFFICAL CEREMONY.
So, when Joseph desired to marry, God sent him a GOOD WOMAN-A GOOD WOMAN TO A GOOD MAN! But Satan hates genuinely GOOD things, and always fights to destroy it. So, don't be surprised to see a gift that has been given to you, out of God's perfect will for you, and out of your prayers, being thrown into confusion and looks as if you had made a mistake to have asked it from God. When you are faced with problem from the gift of God, take that problem back to God, and don't try to resolve it through sinful way, or by your wisdom. You will compound the problem the more for yourself. Joseph, only proposed to Mary and it was a public ceremony, but they were not husband and wife yet. Mary was still living with her parent. One day, Mary reported to Joseph that she was Pregnant! Pregnant, NOT BY Joseph. A VIRGIN! HOW DID IT HAPPEN! Joseph's mind went straight into accusing her of infidelity and unfaithfulness. Any human-being would think the same. But God KNEW THE SECRET OF IT ALL. That is why man should take his place as man, when he sees some QUESTIONABLE things around a true child of God who has NEVER BEEN CAUGHT COMMITING SIN IN THE PRACTICE! In such circumstance, a benefit of doubt should be given to that child of God, and prayer should be made to God to SPEAK PEACE TO A WORRYING HEART BECAUSE OF THE UNCONFIRMED SITUATION THAT THE CHILD OF GOD HIMSELF OR HERSELF, IS FIGHTING IN PRAYER, TO UNDERSTAND WHY GOD HAS BROUGHT HIM OR HER INTO. Patience and waiting for the truth, or a statement like the man Garmellion(not sure of the spelling) made when the disciples of Jesus were about to be thrown into prison for `turning the world upside down with a strange doctrine of Jesus Christ`. The statement made by one of the members of the Sanhedrin was that, `let us leave these men alone, if this things be of God, it will stand, if not, it would go away with these men`. Joseph here, started to plan the method he would put Mary away, and no more committed to marrying her. He was a god-fearing man, and wanted to do it in a way that Mary would not be mocked at. But The Faithful God does not leave His loving Child in the dark for too long, so God sent an angel to Joseph during that confusing time of his life. The angel told him not to put away Mary, his wife, for `THE CHILD IN HER WOMB, IS OF THE HOLY GHOST`! That was all Joseph needed to straighten the situation. Teaching a lesson that, when God's Word comes to anybody, despite the situation, the person should just take God as He is, act on the word, and be content with the solution.
JOSEPH AND MARY GOT MARRIED AND LIVE HENCEFORTH AS HUSBAND AND WIFE.
As we all know, an Engagement is not full marriage(although in some cases, a couple may decide to go low from there, and may only have to call two or three people later to solidify the marriage, and henceforth move in to live with one another). Some customs or the couple themself may like to go into full-scaled wedding celebration or Native wedding. In the Sight of God, an agreement between two rightful couple(man and woman) to be joined together in marriage, in the presence of two or three witness, constitudes a holy marriage. So, the two styles above, constitudes Marriage vows and the couple can move in together after any of the above agreement, for marriage contract.
Joseph reconciled with Mary. Date for the marriage was fixed, and was conducted by the proud leader of the Synagogue!
THE WEDDING: Mary and Joseph were not rich, we are told. So this wedding might have been a low-scaled, but spirit-filled one.
MARY, PREGNANT OF THE HOLY GHOST BEFORE WEDDING
THE BIRTH OF JESUS CHRIST: THE MESSIAH, THE SAVIOUR OF THE WORLD, THE THIRD PERSON IN THE GODHEAD STRUCTURE, THE JOINT-MAKER OF THE WORLD, THE CREATOR OF MANKIND, THE KING OF kings, THE LORD OF lords, THE HOLY SON OF GOD, THE MERCIFUL, THE COMPASSIONATE FRIEND TO SINNERS AND THE REDEEMER OF SINNERS THROUGH THE BLOOD HE SHED. THE GREAT WARRIOR, THE GIVER OF ALL GOOD AND PERFECT GIFTS, THE GREAT HEALER AND THE GOD ETERNAL!!
YOU ARE WELCOME TO THE SINFUL WORLD. THANK YOU FOR SUCH GREAT LOVE YOU SHOWED TO MANKIND, THROUGH YOUR DEATH ON THE CROSS. THANK YOU FOR THE JOY YOU BROUGHT DOWN TO THE EARTH. THANK YOU FOR SALVATION GIVEN TO WHOSOEVER BELIEVES IN YOU. PLEASE ACCEPT OUR PRAISES AND OUR THANKS, GOD THE FATHER, GOD THE SON AND GOD THE HOLY GHOST, FOR THE PLAN OF REDEMPTION OF MAN. AMEN.
TO ALL OUR WEBSITE VISITORS:
PLEASE CHOOSE JESUS CHRIST AS YOUR BEST FRIEND IN HEAVEN AND ON EARTH TODAY. LOVE HIM WITH ALL YOUR HEART. THAT LOVE WILL COMPEL YOU TO DO WHAT HE TELLS YOU TO DO SO AS TO BE ABLE TO WALK WITH HIM IN A HEALTHY RELATIONSHIP ALL THE DAYS OF YOUR LIFE HERE ON EARTH, AND TO LIVE WITH HIM FACE-TO-FACE IN HEAVEN.
JESUS DIED IN GREAT AGONY AND SHED HIS BLOOD FOR YOU, SO THAT HIS BLOOD CAN WASH YOUR SINS AWAY AND PRESENTS YOU ACCEPTABLE BEFORE GOD. HIS BLOOD HAS MADE IT POSSIBLE FOR GOD TO TURN AWAY HIS WRATH FROM YOU, AS A SINNER, AND MAKES YOU CLEAN BEFORE GOD. IF YOU HAVE NOT BEEN FREED FROM YOUR SINS YET, YOU CAN BE SET FREE TODAY, BY ACKNOWLEDGING THAT YOU ARE A SINNER, AND THAT YOU NEED THE BLOOD OF JESUS TO WORK OVER YOUR SINS AND GIVES YOU SPIRITUAL FREEDOM. YOU CAN RECEIVE THAT SALVATION THAT MADE JESU CAME DOWN TO EARTH, TO OFFER TO MAN. BY FAITH, YOU CAN OBTAIN THAT FREEDOM, THROUGH REPENTING OF YOUR SINS AND FORSAKING THEM ALL. YOU CAN OBTAIN THE POWER TO LIVE WITHOUT COMMITTING SIN, 24/7, AND ALL THE DAYS OF YOUR LIFE. YOU CAN USE THE SAME POWER TO MAINTAIN YOUR HOLY RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD UNTIL YOU PASS AWAY FROM THIS EARTH. YOU CAN BE SURE OF WHERE YOU WILL OPEN YOUR EYES AND HENCEFORTH LIVE IN JOY UNDISTURBED, AND FOREVER.
THIS CHRISTMAS OF THIS YEAR, 2017, CAN CHANGE YOU INTO THE BEST THIS LIFE CAN OFFER, AND LANDS YOU INTO THE BEST OF ALL, ETERNALLY IN HEAVEN. MAKE THIS CHOICE, AND NOTE EACH DAY THAT YOU WILL NOT REGRET THE CHOICE.
HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO YOU ALL, FROM HATIFMANDU.
MARY AND JOSEPH-ACTIVITIES AROUND THEM BEFORE AND AFTER MARRIAGE.