Confess Jesus as Lord
Matthew 2:1-15: Today is Epiphany, the celebration of the arrival of visitors from the East to meet the baby Jesus. When the visitors arrive and mention the star, Herod is upset and enquires about where Jesus is to be born. He tells the men to search for the child and come back and tell him about Jesus’ whereabouts. The men from the East meet the baby, worship him, and give him gifts. Then they return home another way, as God warns them not to return to Herod.
Today's Scripture: Matthew 2:6
“Bethlehem in the land of Judah, you are by no means the least of the leading cities of Judah; for from you will come a leader who will guide my people Israel.”
1 Jesus was born in the town of Bethlehem in Judea, during the time when Herod was king. Soon afterward, some men who studied the stars came from the East to Jerusalem 2 and asked, “Where is the baby born to be the king of the Jews? We saw his star when it came up in the east, and we have come to worship him.” 3 When King Herod heard about this, he was very upset, and so was everyone else in Jerusalem. 4 He called together all the chief priests and the teachers of the Law and asked them, “Where will the Messiah be born?” 5 “In the town of Bethlehem in Judea,” they answered. “For this is what the prophet wrote: 6 ‘Bethlehem in the land of Judah, you are by no means the least of the leading cities of Judah; for from you will come a leader who will guide my people Israel.’” 7 So Herod called the visitors from the East to a secret meeting and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. 8 Then he sent them to Bethlehem with these instructions: “Go and make a careful search for the child; and when you find him, let me know, so that I too may go and worship him.” 9-10 And so they left, and on their way they saw the same star they had seen in the East. When they saw it, how happy they were, what joy was theirs! It went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. 11 They went into the house, and when they saw the child with his mother Mary, they knelt down and worshiped him. They brought out their gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh, and presented them to him. 12 Then they returned to their country by another road, since God had warned them in a dream not to go back to Herod. 13 After they had left, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph and said, “Herod will be looking for the child in order to kill him. So get up, take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt, and stay there until I tell you to leave.” 14 Joseph got up, took the child and his mother, and left during the night for Egypt, 15 where he stayed until Herod died. This was done to make come true what the Lord had said through the prophet, “I called my Son out of Egypt.”
These visitors, (Matthew calls them magoi in Greek, the Latin magi) may have been astrologers who came from a land to the East. Like others who studied the stars, they believed that when a great leader was about to be born, a new star would appear in the sky. How did these visitors react to the birth of Jesus? How have you reacted to the birth of Jesus this Christmas season?
Jesus, you came to us as a child, innocent, and in need of care, and also as a king for all people. Help all who care for children to see you in them, that they may treat them with patience, kindness and love.
Those who care for children