By Ryne Brewer
This part of the narrative of Jesus’s birth in the Gospel of Matthew asks the question, “Who do you worship?” In America, we often think of worship as something that only happens in churches or temples. But the truth is, we all worship something. We make things—money, careers, happiness, children, spouses, etc.—the kings of our hearts. We give our time, energy, and resources to these things, and if we lost them, we would be crushed.
Two responses to the question, “Who do you worship?” are presented in Matthew 2. Herod, the ruler of the area where Jesus was born, brought the wise men into a secret meeting and told them to find the child so he could go and worship him (Matthew 2:8). But the narrative goes on to tell us that the intentions of Herod weren’t to worship Jesus but to destroy him (v.13). Herod’s response shows that he would do whatever it took to protect his established power.
The wise men, unlike Herod, went to worship the child, falling down with joy before Him and offering up their treasures (v.11). They responded with reverence, rightly worshiping Jesus by posturing themselves and presenting the precious things of their life to Him because they saw this King as more valuable than the treasures they offered.
We all worship something, and who and what we worship matters. This Advent we get to answer for ourselves the same question the wise men did: “Where is he who was born king of the Jews?” (v.2). In response, we know that the eternal King has come and that we are here to worship Him. Jesus is the type of King worth giving all our treasures to, especially the treasure of our lives. This Advent we can put down our self-protection and fear, and in the same posture as the wise men, we can bring with joy the treasure of our lives to the eternal King who has come.