Updated: Jan 3
On Christmas Eve, Lillian Munoz read this passage from Matthew 2:1-3.
“After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea during the time of King Herod, Maji from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, ‘Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.’ When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him.” (NIV)
How appropriate to have a beautiful child read about the birth of our King. Matthew 1:18 states:
“Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows….” Christ in Greek means “anointed one” or
“Chosen one;” in Hebrew, “Messiah” is the equivalent. ( www.gotoquestions.org )
However, this Chosen One or Messiah was born in a humble animal shelter because as we
know “There was no room in the inn.” The Son of our Heavenly Father was born to humble
parents, an adolescent mother and a carpenter or craftsman from Nazareth (of all places). They went to Bethlehem because Caesar Augustus ordered a census. Mary, a very pregnant young woman, rode a donkey from Nazareth to Bethlehem, which is about 70 miles.
In contrast the birth announcement was spectacular. The bright star testified to our King’s
coming. The heavenly chorus cerebrated His birth. The wise men coming from the east followed the star to worship the King. These men showed us how to respond to the LORD-in worship. Their worship suggests “being prostrate,” stated Dr. Tim. They came on a long, difficult journey, but the challenges did not deter them because they wanted to see the King; they wanted to revere the King of the world and of the universe.
Dr. Tim reminded us that we all worship something or someone. If what you worship is Jesus, then it will be evident in your actions. How you spend your time, talent, and treasure speak volumes and is your testimony.
Opposite to the wise men’s worship was Herod’s reaction to the news of the King. Herod was disturbed and threatened. He was so threatened that he ordered the killing of Hebrew baby boys two and under. How desperate he was. He represents Frank Sinatra’s song “I Did It My Way.” He would not and could not humble himself like the wise men did. Herod wanted to dominate at others’ expense.
“All of us are born to a position of hostility to God,” proposed Dr. Tim. Unless we surrender our wills to Him, we can act like Herod-disturbed, threatened and desperate. However, in
Phillippians 2:10 it states that “at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth.” May we daily choose to humble our hearts, minds and souls to Him so that we can be salt and light in this darkened world.
Written by Larry and Annette Linthicum