“Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.” ― Matthew 7:7.
Matthew is the only gospel that includes the story of the wise men. The wise men’s journey from Jerusalem to Bethlehem is described in Matthew 2:9-10: “They went their way; and the star, which they had seen in the east, went on before them until it came and stood over the place where the Child was. When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.” Matthew wanted to make sure people knew how happy the wise men were to find the Christ Child so he used some superlatives. “They rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.”
In verse 11, we see the worship of the wise men: “They entered the house and saw the child with his mother, Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasure chests and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.”
Many lessons can be learned from the actions of the wise men. For example, they made it a priority to pursue the Lord. These men came from a great distance to encounter the Savior. They were committed to having a personal encounter with the newborn King. In the same way, shouldn’t we make it a priority to pursue the Lord and spend time in His presence? Secondly, they came to worship Him. Matthew 2:2 says, “Where is the newborn king of the Jews? We saw his star as it rose, and we have come to worship him.” The purpose of their journey was clear; they came to worship Him. Hopefully, we will take some time away from the trappings of Christmas to worship the reason for the season.
Thirdly. nothing could divert them from their mission (vs. 3-8). When God gives us a dream to pursue, we often have to deal with our own “King Herod” that attempts to keep us from pursuing our mission. The magi truly proved to be “wise men,” able to discern that King Herod had no intention of furthering their mission. May we be able to determine the obstacles that would prohibit us from fulfilling our spiritual mission as well. Fourth, the Bible tells us that these men “… returned to their own country by another route, for God had warned them in a dream not to return to Herod” (vs. 12). If you read the story again, it’s easy to see why. They were supposed to let Herod know where he could find Jesus. They knew what Herod wanted and they knew that their failure to honor his request would mean death for them. But I’d like to also think that the wise men’s lives, just like our lives, were changed after they met Jesus. Often we are desperate to go in a direction that was far more comfortable than paths God would have us follow. But genuine worship will transform us and cause us to walk on a different path after we found the life-changing, life-saving power of Jesus Christ.
The wise man sought and found Jesus as a young child. When we seek Him today, we find Him today as the living Christ, clothed with glory and honor and seated at the right hand of His Father in heaven.
This Christmas, may the Lord give you a fresh revelation of His love for you—love that took Him from the glories of Heaven to a dusty stable in Bethlehem…to a Cross on a Jerusalem hillside…to the right hand of God’s throne in Heaven…so that you might spend eternity with Him.
- Does it surprise you the sacrifices the wise men made to see the child Jesus? What do you think motivated the wise men to journey so far from home and their refusal to be diverted from their mission?