By Russ Ramsey
Merry Christmas! Jesus Christ is born! Jesus who lived, died, and rose again, lives forever as your intercessor, Savior, prophet, priest, and King. Today is a great day to follow the example of the learned men from the east and worship Jesus.
The story of the wise men is fascinating. For children, it’s neatly packaged: three wise men from the east follow a star to the baby Jesus and give Him presents. But the reality of the story is really strange, if you think about it.
First, let’s start with what we don’t know. We don’t know how many wise men there were. We know they presented three gifts, but that doesn’t necessarily mean there were only three magi. There may have been two or three dozen. We don’t know. We also don’t know what country they were from or what religion they followed. Eastern magi tended to be into astrology, sorcery, and divination. They tell Herod’s people they saw a star rise and knew it signified the birth of a king. Beyond that, we’re not told much.
What we do know is they came to meet this king for the purpose of worshipping him, “and falling to their knees, they [did worship] him” (Matthew 2:11). We know they were led by the Holy Spirit, and we know God guided them throughout their quest—even showing them how to evade the trap Herod had tried to set in order to capture and kill Jesus. It’s a really strange story. But through it, we see a few powerful truths.
First, we see that God speaks through His Holy Spirit to accomplish His will. Though we don’t know the beliefs of the wise men, we know the Holy Spirit guided them, and they followed.
Second, we see that the Spirit of God draws people unto Himself and protects us from danger. The Holy Spirit led the wise men to Jesus and that same Holy Spirit led them away from Herod’s trap. If the Holy Spirit has the power and wisdom to lead the wise men so well in order to preserve the life of Jesus, He can preserve us now through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.
Third, we see that the coming of the Messiah is good news that was announced to the whole world—to both Jews (Shepherds) and Gentiles (Wise Men). God spoke to the entire world through the gift of the Holy Spirit.
In all of this, we see that the Holy Spirit preserves us. The same Spirit preserving Jesus and the wise men also preserves us. When we doubt God can deliver us from trouble, we see how God protected His Son and the wise men so well that the most powerful man in the land, Herod, could not get to Jesus.
So again, Merry Christmas! You’re in good hands. Rest in Jesus today.
Written by Russ Ramsey