“Where is he that is born King of the Jews? For we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him”-Matthew 2:2
The incarnation of the Son of God was one of the greatest events in the history of the universe. One might have thought that God making His personal appearance in the form of flesh would have made a grand entrance. But there was nothing at His birth to attract the attention of the Scribes and Pharisees. Nor would the Caesars find an interest in His lowly birth. As Isaiah had prophesied, “he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him”-Isaiah 53:2. The birth of the Christ Child was revealed to shepherds of Bethlehem and certain wise men of the east. From a few wise inquirers, we may learn some very practical lessons. First, let us notice their inquiry. Secondly, let us notice their encouragement. And finally, let us learn from their motives.
It is always encouraging to find inquiring minds concerning the things of God. It is an evidence of grace, an attribute of one who is spiritually alive and hungers for spiritual nourishment. These will learn all that they can about their Lord, from the cradle to the cross, they will leave no stone unturned.
Here we learn that the wise inquirer has a teachable spirit even if he has to go by the way of Herrod to learn about the Christ child. Though a rich man, the Ethiopian Eunuch was willing to learn from the humble evangelist, Philip, concerning Christ. When Philip drew near the chariot and asked the Eunuch if he understood the text, his reply was that of an anxious inquirer, “How can I except some man should guide me?” As Spurgeon said, “When a man listens with deep attention to the word of God, searches God’s book, and engages in thoughtful meditation with the view of understanding the gospel, we have much hope of him.”
In the case of the wise men, we also see ignorance admitted. Wise men are never above asking questions, that is how they became wise. Some persons who have taken the name and degree of wise men sometimes think it beneath them to confess any degree of ignorance, but those who are really wise do not think so. They are too well instructed to be ignorant of their own ignorance. As one man said, “The knowledge of our ignorance is the doorstep of the temple of knowledge.” Some know they know all, and therefore never know. The Pharisee claimed to see all spiritual things. What could a poor carpenter teach them? But Jesus must say to them, “If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth”-John 9:41. Knowledge had the key to unlock Satan’s trap. In such a pit, would it matter where knowledge was gained. The wise men would go by way of Herrod to learn the place of the Christ child. God has a depository of knowledge vested in His most feeble followers. We may learn from all.
Their search for the Christ child was attended with many encouragements. God will not leave “wise inquirers” in the dark concerning His Son. Though we do not expect His star to appear again, there are many lesser lights that can guide us to His cot today. We live in a land that we may preach the gospel freely; have a Bible in our homes; and worship unhindered and unharmed. Are not these equally stars of encouragement to lead us closer to Emmanuel? How few are following. There will be many unchurched this Sabbath day. Surely, they will miss a blessing!
His star was a matter of great favor. Not all attended the gathering at the manger. Few knew of the star’s significance. These men were, therefore, highly privileged. Has the day star risen in your heart? Is Christ in you, the hope of glory? Follow that light. It must lead us only closer to Him.
A MOTIVE DECLARED
“Where is he…we are come to worship him”. Their motive was declared. A wise one indeed! Surely, He is worthy. Let all of creation adore Him. And how did they do so? They presented to Him their gifts. Gold, frankincense and myrrh were laid at the redeemer’s feet, precious cargo from the east. When the heart is genuinely touched, the hand is gracefully opened. We will not need the law to teach us to give for this is a spontaneous act worship. Mary with her alabaster box of precious ointment; the widow’s mite; the gifts of the wise men; the hearts of the shepherds; the chorus of the angels; all became His at His appearance. True worship is found in the spirit of giving.
Let us be wise inquirers and never cease to seek for Him, where He dwells, and those who attend Him. We may be sure He will always be found among humble surroundings and other wise inquirers. Let our chorus join the angel’s.
Come and worship with us at Harmony Primitive Baptist Church, at Donaldson, where God is sovereign, and salvation is by His abundant and amazing grace. Services begin at 10:30 each Sunday morning.
By His mercy and grace,
Neil Phelan, Jr., Pastor