Matthias was chosen as an apostle to replace Judas. Joseph Barsabbas was not chosen; he was passed over. Have you ever been passed over for a job promotion, turned down for a prettier girl or guy, or lost out to your sibling for a parent's attention? Now what do you do?
All we know about Joseph is the following:
- Joseph followed Jesus wherever He went (Acts 1:21).
- Joseph was faithful over the long haul. He stayed in the company of the disciples from beginning to end (Acts 1:22).
- Joseph did not seek honors for himself; but was nominated by the others (Acts 1:23).
- Joseph was a powerful, faithful disciple, worthy of being an apostle.
- Joseph joined the leaders and Matthias in humbly seeking God's will (Acts 1:24).
- Joseph was ready to serve God if he was chosen.
After Matthias was chosen, we hear no more about Joseph. However, it's likely that Joseph responded to being "un-chosen" by living the same faithful, committed life as always. Joseph may not have been chosen, but he was choose-able.
Like Joseph, we can be faithful slaves of God, "each of [us] doing only what the Lord assigned" us (1 Cor 3:5). Even if passed over for some position or favor, we are always "chosen and precious in the sight of God" (1 Pt 2:4, RNAB). Choose to stay faithful, thankful, and humble.
|Rescript: In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant the Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") for One Bread, One Body covering the period from April 1, 2019 through May 31, 2019.
†Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, November 28, 2018.