Day 25

The Eternal King Has Come

from the Advent 2023 reading plan

Matthew 2:1-23, Isaiah 60:1-3

BY Nicole Smithee

During Advent, we are inundated with images of the nativity scene. Often we see Jesus’s birth depicted with Mary, Joseph, shepherds, and three wise men joined by a few barn animals, all assembled to worship Jesus. In the center of these figures lies an infant Jesus, angelically and peacefully still and awake (which seems slightly unbelievable if you’ve ever spent any amount of time with a newborn). 

It’s safe to say we have condensed quite a bit of Jesus’s birth story to fit into our Christmas traditions, including our understanding of the wise men. In reality, the wise men most likely didn’t visit Jesus till He was a toddler. Scripture makes no mention of only three of them making the journey to worship Jesus, and they weren’t kings. These men were wealthy priests who likely would have traveled with a large entourage for protection as officials from the East, most likely Persia. 

They were wealthy, they were educated, they were influential…and yet of all the things they had experienced in their lives, when they arrived where Jesus was, they were overwhelmed with joy (Matthew 2:10). A more word-for-word translation of this phrase in Matthew is, “they rejoiced with a great joy exceedingly.” In other words, they were ecstatic!

We all long for this type of joy but often come up short. We look for this type of joy in thrilling experiences, new relationships, career achievements, financial success, health goals…the list goes on and on. We go to great lengths in the search for happiness, but many times the fruit of our efforts end with fleeting pleasure instead of the wise men’s joy.

The wise Magi traveled from afar and were given the chance to worship Jesus, the eternal King (Matthew 2:2). Do we believe that seeking Jesus is always the journey worth taking? What voyage of the heart and soul are we willing to make? What discomforts and unknowns are we willing to embrace simply to bless the King of kings and Lord of lords?

Jesus is the Light of the World. Come to His light; draw near this season to His brightness (Isaiah 60:3). Make the journey. Take it from the Magi—it’s the greatest journey you’ll ever take.

Post Comments (55)

55 thoughts on "The Eternal King Has Come"

  1. Regina Price says:


  2. Karen Breaux says:

  3. Emma Rageth says:

    This was such a beautiful devotional, but one that was also deeply convicting. So often I find myself not putting God at the center of my life and thoughts. Being willing to put aside all questioning, discomfort, and the pain of unmet expectations to worship the Eternal King is something that I find myself struggling with, especially in my season of infertility and waiting on His promises. Please pray that I would learn to seek Gods face instead of his hands

    1. Kathryn Wright says:

      Praying for you Emma

  4. Susan Bonner says:

    Thank you, Mercy.

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