God is my conscience, Jesus lives in my heart… this blog is about what I see, what I think, what I do and how I serve God
Reflection About Magi
10 December 2013
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NIV2010 Matthew 2:12b “…they returned to their country by another route.”
In the places where there is not too much light pollution we can see thousands of stars at night. In reality they are huge celestial bodies orbited by planets, but to us they look like tiny specks of light, not bigger than the tip of a pin.
The Wise Men probably knew about the future arrival of the Messiah because they had access to the Scriptures of the Hebrew Bible, maybe the scroll of Daniel or even Isaiah. We don’t know for sure how they knew to watch for the clues that something major was going to happen in the land of Ancient Palestine. We know, however, that it was a tiny speck of light, no bigger than the tip of a pin, that alerted the Wise Men that the long promised Messiah was born, and based on this small speck of light they left the comforts of their home and embarked on a long arduous journey to Jerusalem.
It appears that the star they were following was visible only to them. Herod does not mention the star when they arrived at his palace. Herod’s advisers searched the scriptures to find references to the birth of the Messiah but they do not mention anything about the star. The wise men were sent to Bethlehem based on prophesies found in Micah 5:2, 4. When they were on their way again, the mysterious star appeared to them once more and led them to Bethlehem.
They arrived in Bethlehem two or possibly three years after Jesus was born. Tradition says there were three of them because of the three gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh but there may have been more or less than the traditional three. We just read the Biblical account and the Bible does not say how many of them came to worship Jesus.
I think that they came from somewhere in Persia, and that they traveled a portion of the major road that was known as the Silk Highway. The gold, frankincense and myrrh that they presented to Jesus could be easily acquired from traders on the Silk Highway.
Coming near the Sacred, coming near the Holy, transforms us. Coming near the Sacred and Holy awakens the sense of mystery and wonder in our own lives. That is what happened to the Wise Men; they were transformed by the experience of Jesus. At the end of the story we learned they “… returned to their country by another route” (Matt 2:12).
I wonder what their lives were like after they came back to their families, back to the familiar comfort of their homes, to their libraries and their observatories. I wonder how they faced their routine, how their understanding of the purpose of their lives changed and what hopes and dreams were born in their lives?
How has the presence of the Christ Child transformed your life in the past, and what does this presence inspire you to in the present? Are you willing to sing a new song? Are you willing to do something different from your usual routine? Are you willing to step out on faith? Are you willing to take “another route?”