Wise Men Visit the King
Open Your Bible
Matthew 2:1-23, Jeremiah 31:15-17
Section 3: The Light Dawns
Scripture Reading: Matthew 2:1-23, Jeremiah 31:15-17
The wise men have always been, at least to me, some of the most perplexing parts of the traditional Christmas story. They appear in nativity sets, kids always play them in pageants, and we even sing traditional hymns about them. The perplexing piece is, however, that Scripture doesn’t really lead us to include them at Christmas time. And yet, their story reflects an unavoidable and beautiful truth about Jesus: you don’t have to fit a script to worship Him.
The magi came to Jesus after His birth; scholars suggest even up to two years after He was born. Magi were non-Jewish mystics who studied astrology and had a special relationship, they believed, with the stars. These magi heard whispers of a king born and saw an unusual star, which they felt compelled to follow. So they set off with gifts to see who the star portended.
When the magi arrived, though, Scripture is clear about what happened. These men of magic and stars fell immediately to their knees in the presence of Jesus. They worshiped Him. They gave Him fine gifts, of gold and frankincense and myrrh. And even though the wicked King Herod had instructed them to tell him where this baby King was, they fled in another direction. They worshiped and they believed. They were changed.
This is the gift of our King Jesus. No matter why or when or how you come to Him, His majesty and glory are undeniable. His presence commands us to fall to our knees and worship; He is that great, that awesome, that good. The magi left home following a hunch and a burning ball of gas in the night sky; they left Mary and Joseph’s home with a newfound knowledge of what was good and true. They, the first Gentiles to worship the Messiah, show us in their story how powerful the love of Christ is.
And so even if they don’t exactly fit in the Christmas story chronologically, the magi show us what it means to be in the presence of Jesus, God incarnate. God with us. May we soak in the goodness and presence of our Lord this season, no matter where we’ve been or what brought us to this place. May we fall on our knees and worship Him.
Written by Melanie Rainer