Matthew 2:1-12 tells us the story of the Magi or The Three Wise Men. I believe one reason Matthew wrote about this was to make a practical and very theological point to the early Christian church. During the time of the early church, Christians were being persecuted and it was a very difficult time. I believe Matthew wrote this as a reminder that God’s light will shine in the darkness and guide you to Christ, the same way the shining star guided the wise men all the way to Bethlehem; to a cradle that held the Christ, the Messiah, the King of the World. I want to look at the journey of the wise men and share three very important ideas from the passage Matthew 2:1-12.
First of all, before they could follow the light the wise men had to know what God had said so long ago. They had to study the scriptures to understand the prophecy about the birth of the Messiah. This is still so important for you and I today. In order to know and understand where God is leading us, we must know what the scriptures say. We need to know what God said so long ago. We need to understand the promises of God. Isn’t it interesting that even the wise men had to study and understand the scriptures to get to where they were going?
Second, in Matthew 2:9, we read that the wise men went on their way when the very star they had seen in the East went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was born. It was a sign to them to know they were on the right track. It can be so easy for us to get caught up in life’s demands and struggles that we often miss the signs God places before us. I think the reason we are all so touched by Christmas is that we allow ourselves to be drawn closer to Christ. It doesn’t matter what the external circumstances are in your life; when you journey back to Christ you can know joy.
And third, in Matthew 2:11 it says “in going in they saw the child with Mary, his mother and they fell down and worshipped him. Then opening their treasures, they offered him gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.” Have you ever wondered what the wise men did when they finally returned home after seeing the Messiah? I think it’s fun to think about them years later, sitting around talking about their travels. I can’t help but think being one with Christ had to have been the ultimate high point of their journey! They were so moved in the moment that they felt compelled to offer gifts.
Christmas is God’s promise that he will shine His light into the darkness and guide us back to Christ so that we can experience true joy. For when we receive the gift of Christ’s love, it leads us to a deep desire to share that love with others.
God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son that whosoever should believeth in him shall never perish. – John 3:16