From HAVEN NEWS Christmas 2017
There weren’t three of them, and they weren’t Kings. They were Magi, Wise Men and we remember them because they travelled that very long and hazardous journey, just to find Jesus.
“On coming to the house they saw the child with his mother Mary and they bowed down and worshipped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of frankincense and of myrrh.” (Matthew 2:11)
You pay respect to a king, you serve a king, but you only worship God. The wise men had recognized who Jesus is, the Son of God, so they gave Him the honour and glory and praise and worship which is His right! And it is the same today, two millennia later. History has seen many great philosophers and moral teachers, and many great leaders, but the whole world counts its years from the birth of Jesus Christ. This is because, out of all these great figures through history who receive our admiration, only one is worthy of our worship and our praise, Jesus Christ, the Son of God. And they brought gifts.
GOLD – a fitting gift for a King, the King of heaven. Jesus was called Immanuel which means “God with us,” God born as a human being to bring the world back to Himself.
FRANKINCENSE – a fitting gift for a priest, someone who represents men and women before God. There is no-one better and no one else to bring us to God but Jesus the Son of God who said, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No-one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)
MYRRH – a very strange gift indeed – the pain-killing medicine used to anoint bodies for burial. Yet myrrh was a fitting gift for Jesus the Saviour who “did not come to be served but to serve and to give his life as the ransom for many,” (Mark 10:45) to die on the cross so that we could be forgiven.
NO WONDER the Wise Men bowed down to worship that tiny baby, Jesus, the King, the Priest and the Saviour. They laid down their lives along with their gifts. And the same Jesus Christ is worthy of the same response from us today—our worship, our trust, our commitment. The Saviour of the world is still to be found. Wise men, and women, and children, seek him still.
Happy Christmas everybody!