Matthew 2:13, 19, 22
And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appears to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise…
Three times in this chapter, as well as once in the preceding (Matthew 1:20), do we thus read of the intervention of particular Divine directions given to Joseph in the interest of the infant Jesus. The grand head under which events of this kind must seek and find their classification is that of providence. The next greatest fact to creation is providence, without which creation itself would soon have proved a still-born thing, or some monstrosity. The objections that have been sometimes felt, sometimes urged, against particular providences, do but betoken a feeble hold upon the real nature of providence. They incontestably lie in part material, and must be granted to be in somewhat closer relationship, at all events, than the interpositions called miracles and the general course of the so-called laws of nature. The very same hand that ministers the one ministers and rules the other in both instances. As surely as "a thousand fall at our side, and ten thousand at our right hand," seen, more than those numbers fall unseen also. As surely as we owe it to God's goodness that we are saved from the comparatively few dangers we see and are cognizant of, we owe it to that goodness that we are saved from an immensely larger number unseen, undreamt of. What appears to us as the extraordinary interventions of Divine goodness and mercy are in no wise so extraordinary as respects the quality of the goodness and mercy, as in the fact that the whole matter of them lies, for some reason or other, disclosed and patent before our eyes. Notice, therefore, that -
I. THE NECESSITIES OF HUMAN LIFE, IN VIEW OF ITS WEAKNESS AND ITS NO FORESIGHT, ARE SUCH AS TO REQUIRE THE CONTINUAL MINISTRY OF DIVINE PROVIDENCE.
II. THE ADVANTAGE OF HUMAN LIFE IS INFINITELY CONSULTED IN THE INTERVENTION OF THAT PROVIDENCE IN SUCH SHAPE AND MANNER AS SHALL MAKE IT STRIKINGLY APPARENT.
III. THOUGH SOME DIVINITY UNMISTAKABLY HEDGED IN THIS WONDERFUL, IMPERILLED, GLORIOUS LIFE OF JESUS, YET, AT PRESENT AT ALL EVENTS, NO SPECIAL DIVINITY HEDGED IT IN. NO "mark was placed on Jesus to designate him as the Favourite of God and of angels. Neither his Person nor his head only were really enveloped in a halo. He is befriended by providence, and faithfully befriended, but
(1) only to the extent of his need, and
(2) only in the same kind of way as innumerable others.
His earthly parents must take all care, all precautions, all toilsome journeys, all vexatious home-leaving and country-leaving, if he is to be safe.
IV. DEEP INDICATIONS LIE IN ALL THIS OF THE MOST REAL HUMANITY OF JESUS, AND OF HIS UNFEIGNED, OBEDIENT TAKING OF HUMAN NATURE AND HUMAN LOT. - B.
Parallel VersesKJV: And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him.
WEB: Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream, saying, "Arise and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and stay there until I tell you, for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him."