The Family of Jesus

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by Alex Aivars

Then the people began to complain about him because he said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven.” They were saying, “Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How can he now say, ‘I have come down from heaven’?” 

– John 6:41-42

 

Image Description: photo of the book of Genesis and the ELM logo with the title: Queer Scripture Reflections.

I’ve been thinking more and more about having kids. My boyfriend and I have had a few conversations about the subject. 

 

A little research brings up a host of options for us. Those options include adoption, surrogacy, foster care, to name a few. 

With all of these options it will mean that for us to have a child and create a family with kids, it will involve more than simply the two of us. There will still always be at least one more person, maybe even more than one, or an organization, or some other type of legal entity, involved in the creation of our family with kids.

I see something similar in the creation of the family of Jesus.

At the conception of Jesus, yes, there were only two entities involved: God and Mary. When Joseph learns of this pregnancy without him, we are told that Joseph is thinking of leaving Mary. But God persuades Joseph to stay and for them to be husband and wife and raise Jesus as their own son.

This solidifies the family of Jesus. Except Jesus didn’t have only two parents, Mary and  Joseph. In the family of Jesus, there were three parents: Mary, Joseph, and God.

God became the third entity in the life and family of Jesus.

Those around Jesus didn’t understand the family structure that included Jesus. Those around him knew Jesus had earthly parents in Mary and Joseph. And yet, here was Jesus talking about coming down from heaven. At one point Jesus even says that he’s the Son of God. This made no sense to them. A person could only have two parents, not three. 

And yet, Jesus did indeed have three parents: Mary, Joseph, and God.

For myself and my boyfriend, the creation of a family with kids involves more than two people. Just like in the creation of the family of Jesus.

In our baptisms, we become part of this family of Jesus. God was, and continues to be, always with Jesus, doting on their son. God is always with us as well, doting on us. Because God will never leave us. All of us will always be children of God.


 

Alex Aivars (he/him) is currently in his first call as pastor of  St. Stephen Lutheran Church in Lansing, MI. Since this is a part-time call, he also develops websites for businesses, non-profits, and other churches. In his spare time he likes to read, hike, bike, ski, and make art out of post-in notes.

 

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