Sunday, January 8, 2017
Celebrating Epiphany -- The Wise Men Showed Up to Worship
Most manger scenes include those three wise men, but, in reality, the wise men didn't even actually appear until about two years after Christmas. Tradition has led us to assume many things about these men that the Bible doesn't tell us. For one, they're referred to as “kings,” which is probably not accurate. To call them wise is probably fair, as the mostly likely possibility is that these men were astrologers and the Bible doesn't give the number of men. All we know for sure is that they brought three gifts on their long journey from the East.
These men had seen a very unusual star that signaled to them the birth of divine royalty. So, like captains charting a course by the stars in the middle of the vast ocean, these men set off to “follow” the star. Their journey brought them to Judea. And assuming that the star indicated a birth in the house of the ruler, they went first to King Herod's home.“Where is the King of the Jews?” they asked Herod. That question was the beginning of Jesus’ troubles. Herod didn’t like the question, because he WAS the King of the Jews, and the fact that it was being asked by some foreigners who had journeyed from a distant country was even more troubling to the king. The thought that there was a rival to his throne was terribly disturbing for him.
So we get the sense that a plan began to form in Herod’s head. But first, he needed to know where this newborn King of the Jews was. Herod sent the men out to find the baby, then to report back where he was. So the men go, continuing to follow the star that had led them there to Judea. And sure enough, it led them right to the doorsteps of the home of Mary, Joseph and their child Jesus.
Reader’s Digest once posed the question “What if God had called 3 Wise Women instead of 3 Wise Men? If 3 women.....
1. They would have asked for directions to the stable instead of going to King Herod.
2. They would have arrived on time and helped deliver the baby.
3. They would have cleaned the stable and brought practical food for the family to eat – like a casserole.
4. And there would have been peace on earth!”
Those wise men brought gifts to Jesus, but Jesus gave them, and us, back so much more -- an even greater gift. He came here to this earth ON PURPOSE. He became one of us so that He could GIVE to us the gift of a “PAID IN FULL” bill. He gave us the gift of forgiveness and a pardon from ever having to pay for the mistakes we make. He gave His ALL!
All we have to do is receive and take the gift. And once we do, we won't be able to help ourselves -- we will want to give back to Him in worship with everything we are and everything we have. We honor and worship Him. When we experience His love, like the Wise Men, we MUST give and we MUST worship Him, not because we’re required or have to, but because we want to honor, adore and worship our KING of all KINGS!
Labels: astrologers, epiphany, for god so loved the world, gold frankincense and myrrh, honor, judea, king herod, love gives, magi, Matthew 2:11, paid in full, star, three kings, three wise men, worship
It was just "puppy love" that brought my Honey and I together at the ages of 13 and 12. We eventually married at the "mature" ages of 18 and 17. And that's when our faith journey began. Over the years, we encountered many opportunities to stretch our faith, especially when our babies were very sick, when financial situations were out of control, and when our marriage relationship had some rocky periods.But we made it through those times by our strong faith and trust in God. But never was our faith more challenged, than when my 63 years "young" husband was diagnosed with Stage 4 Kidney Cancer. Fortunately, the 44 years of marriage and faith-building experiences, caused us to "weather the storm", and still remain in peace and strong in our faith. This "peace that passed understanding" compelled me to blog and share the principles that caused our faith to be unwavering and continues to give me the joys of living large! I'm still here, so I'm not done!. I pray you will grow in your faith as you, not only read the blogs, but apply the principles to your own life -- for the good times, and especially for those times that seem so overwhelming.