It took a lot for the Wise Men (also referred to as Magi) to successfully locate Jesus. Prompted by God's supernatural star, they were convinced to make the long journey to make homage to what they were convinced was a new-born king of the Jews. They were sure that this new strange star, located in the direction of Jerusalem, was a sign. It must have been an amazing sight in the night-time sky. And who knows, maybe it was even visible in the day time.
Their journey had to take a lot of preparation. They would need to get a caravan together, which included supplies, food, animals, and people. Their journey could take weeks or even months. They intended to encounter this new king, bow before him in worship, and present to him gifts. The gifts they chose to bring were very expensive and precious.
There were 3 gifts. The first was gold. Even back then gold was considered the finest of all metals, and very costly. Secondly, frankincense, which was a valuable incense. And thirdly, myrrh, which was a precious anointing oil. You can be sure, they brought an ample amount of each.
When the Wise Men finally found Jesus, they bowed down before Him, and worshiped Him. By their bowing down, it showed their humility, their reverence, and their acknowledgement of Jesus as King - a good lesson for us about worship. Then they presented Him with their gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
"On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh." (Matthew 2:11)
I like how their worship was independent of their giving of gifts. Another good lesson for us. After all, Jesus would later say, "worship the Lord your God, and serve him only."
Well done Wise Men. Seems like their mission was accomplished. Or was it? Maybe in their mind it was. But in God's mind, their mission was much bigger than they ever suspected. They were players in God's incredible plan. It had to do with the family of Joseph, Mary and Jesus.
You see, Joseph and Mary were poor. The type of gift they presented when they brought baby Jesus to the temple proved it. However, they would soon need money, and a lot of it. That's because they had to flee Bethlehem, and travel all the way to Egypt because of Herod's intent to try to kill Jesus. Herod ordered all boys 2 years old and younger in Bethlehem and it's vicinity to be killed.
So flee they did. They traveled all the way to Egypt, and they lived there until Herod died. That took money - money that they didn't have. Guess what? It was the gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh that sustained them. God, in His great providence, used the Wise Men and their gifts to provide for Joseph, Mary, and Jesus. That's the real reason the Wise Men came. They were players in God's big-picture plan, and didn't even realize it.
That's how God works sometimes. He is able to arrange situations, and line up people with each other. It's called providence. That's because He is all powerful, and sovereign. Sometimes we don't even realize how He is working in our lives. But when we reflect back, it becomes clear. The Lord is alive and well.
There may be times when you are in situations that seem too difficult to resolve. Perhaps you need a door opened. Or maybe you simply need God to provide for the needs you have. Remember that nothing is impossible with the Lord. Have faith and trust in His providence - that He is able to do all things - that He is aware of your situation, and that He is in control.
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