December 11, 2014 | Posted in: Devotional
Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him…
We so often sing about three wise men at this time of year but this totally misrepresents this part of the advent story!
Nowhere are kings (apart from Jesus and Herod) mentioned. And certainly there is no mention of a number… that is derived from their gifts alone. and they probably weren’t at Jesus’ birth either (the greek word used to describe Jesus means toddler not new born)
And this is this problem with advent…
So many assume they know the story so well when in fact they know the folklore.
The magi were soothsayers, astrologers and magicians (its where we get our word magi from). They were the kingmakers those who would ‘predict’ who a king should announce as their heir. after the king they would have been the next most powerful men in the kingdom… they would have travelled with a huge regiment of cavalry… and this is why Herod and ALL Jerusalem was so troubled at their appearance.
When magi came to worship Jesus, the most revered and powerful pagan priests, the King makers recognised their Creator and Lord and conceded Jesus is ‘numero uno’.
We can be Thankful In Advent because the story re-enforces the simple truth…. despite all the claims of other Gods and men, Jesus is King and that is that!
2:1 In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And all went to be registered, each to his own town. (ESV)