Monday, December 15, 2008

Christmas Marriage Questions

Hey Creekside . . . thanks again for your questions.  Each week you honor me when you choose to text or e-mail your questions from Sunday's teaching.  Here are a couple that came in.

Q. How old were Mary & Joseph when they got married?  

A.  We really don't know, however the tradition of the day was for a man to be much older that the woman.  A man in Jewish tradition entered manhood around 13, but was considered "marriage material" around 30.  Usually he had to have his own home and property, but not always.  This means Joseph was probably in his late twenties or early thirties.  

Women were married much younger, usually in their teens, so Mary could have been somewhere in the 15 to 18 age range. There is a very practical reason for this, as childbirth was difficult and took many lives.  Also, large families were needed to work the agrarian culture the Jewish people lived in.  Large families meant more workers and a more prosperous family business.  So, all in all being a was pretty tough and it wasn't uncommon for a man to have several wives. 

Q. When would a young man report to the census rather than being claimed by his father?

Again, a man would have to be on his own to report to the census.  Also, no one was "claimed" on a census.  Taxes then were not like ours.  A man was taxed on the value of his estate, regardless of how big his family was or even how much money he made.  There were no deductions or claims.  The goal of the Roman Government was to get as much money as possible out of the jewish people, or any people they conquered.

It actually makes you appreciate our American system of government, which not only takes into account your personal expenses, such a medical and family size, but also allows you to deduct your tithe and gifts to the church and other charitable organizations. American has some things wrong with her for sure, but she also has a lot right with her.

Just a thought . . .
Thanks again for your questions.  Next Sunday we'll talk about how to give some incredibly valuable gifts that will not cost you a dime.  They're some great Christmas ideas as we continue with the "Advent Conspiracy"
See you then,


Blogger Ros said...


11:49 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home