But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, son of David, fear not to take unto you Mary your wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit.
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Chromatius of Aquileia
While St. Joseph, yet uninformed of so great a mystery, wanted to put away Mary quietly, he was advised in a dream by an angel who said to him, “Do not be afraid, Joseph, son of David, to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is begotten in her is of the Holy Spirit.” St. Joseph is made aware of the heavenly mystery, lest he think otherwise about Mary’s virginity. He is also made aware of this that he might exclude the evil of suspicion and receive the good of the mystery. The following words were said to him: “Do not be afraid, Joseph, son of David, to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is begotten in her is of the Holy Spirit,” so he might acknowledge the integrity of his fiancée and the virgin birth. It was not appropriate for so great a mystery to be revealed to anyone other than Joseph, who was known to be Mary’s fiancé, and no reproach of sin was attached to his name. In fact, Joseph translated from Hebrew into Latin means “beyond reproach.” Notice here too the order of a mystery: The devil first spoke to Eve the virgin long ago, and then to a man, that he might administer to them the word of death. In the latter case, a holy angel first spoke to Mary and then to Joseph, that he might reveal to them the word of life. In the former case, a woman was chosen unto sin; in the latter case, she was chosen unto salvation. In the former case, the man fell through the woman; in the latter case, he rose through the virgin. The angel therefore said to Joseph, “Do not be afraid, Joseph, son of David, to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is begotten in her is of the Holy Spirit.” And he added, “She shall bring forth a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he shall save his people from their sins.” But this name of Lord which was given to Jesus from the virgin’s womb is not new to him but old. For Jesus translated from Hebrew into Latin means “Savior.” This name is agreeable to God because he says through the prophet: “Just God and a Savior; there is none beside me.” Lastly, when the Lord himself would speak through Isaiah about the bodily origin of his nativity, he says, “The Lord called me from the womb, from the body of my mother he named my name.” His name is certainly not strange, for Jesus was called according to the flesh (i.e., Savior, who was a Savior according to divinity). For Jesus, as we said, is rendered as “Savior.” This is what he said through the prophet: “From the body of my mother he named my name.” And that he might more fully show us the sacrament of his incarnation, he went on to say, “He made my mouth like a sharp sword … he made me a polished arrow, in his quiver he hid me away.” By the arrow he signified his divinity; by the quiver he assumed a body from the Virgin in which his divinity was covered with a garment of flesh.