The Visit of the Magi
1After Jesus was born in
3When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all
6" 'But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for out of you will come a ruler
who will be the shepherd of my people Israel.'[d]"
7Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. 8He sent them to
9After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen in the east[e] went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. 10When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. 11On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh. 12And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.
The Escape to
13When they had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. "Get up," he said, "take the child and his mother and escape to
Have you ever wondered about the gifts that the Magi brought?
I’ve heard sermons that talk about the gifts themselves...odd gifts for a child—gold, frankincense and myrrh. Gold, a gift for a king. Frankincense, a gift for a priest. Myrrh (the strangest of all), a burial spice. (but that's all stuff for another post)
I think that God sometimes has an odd way of presenting us with the gifts that we will need. Often times they come in such a way that we readily dismiss them as coincidence. All of these gifts were valuable. I’m just making a guess that Joseph and Mary weren’t very wealthy people. I doubt that they were ready to move suddenly or take a long journey. Surely they would need supplies for the journey. They didn’t have the time to sell the goods that they couldn’t carry with them—at least, not at a good price. The Bible says that they left in the night. They may have taken some things...but they couldn't have taken much.
Somehow I see God providing Joseph with some quick getaway cash and also with something to sell later on. He would need funds to escape and then he would need a way to provide for his family. Maybe he would sell the incense to buy tools for his trade or to find a home once his family arrived in
It just seems too well planned for this family of modest means to be given gifts of great wealth right before God tells them to move to a far away land. It makes me wonder...it causes me to do a little self examination. What gifts has God provided me with? And for what purpose? What gifts has God provided you with? And again, for what purpose? Are we using the gifts that He has given us for the purpose that He intended? Or have we decided to use them for our own benefit? Or maybe we’ve decided not to use them at all.
I was just wondering.
- Matthew 2:1 Traditionally Wise Men
- Matthew 2:2 Or star when it rose
- Matthew 2:4 Or Messiah
- Matthew 2:6 Micah 5:2