After listening to the king, they went on their way. And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.
Every good manger scene has them. And in my house every year, they spend the month of December being moved back and forth across the room. She puts them with the manger, and daily I move them off somewhere to the east. They must be exhausted; in a month they end up making about thirty trips to the manger!
Who are these “wise men from the east,” as Matthew calls them? The truth is, we don’t know. We don’t know exactly when they made their visit; it was sometime in the first two years, but it wasn’t the night of Jesus’ birth. We don’t know how many wise men actually traveled to see this baby born king of the Jews; we assume there were three because they brought the three gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh—but there could have been only two, or seven, or forty!
From the biblical account, we do know these men only made one trip, and it wasn’t to the manger. We know they were not Jewish; they were Gentiles from another country in the east. And we know that they followed a star. God put a star in the sky to lead them. He put a light in their path to lead them to the Messiah, so they could find and worship the one coming for people from all the nations.
Does God still do that today? How did you find the one worthy of your worship? Did God put someone in your path (a star in your sky) to lead you to Jesus, so you could find him and worship him? Whose path are you in to be a star, a light leading them to Christ?
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