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Dec 22nd, 2020
Christmas According to Cranky Old Men: Herod
By: Chapman Bean
1 minute read 

Matthew 2:1-2 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi 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. (NIV)

 “If it should ever be that men should fail to preach the gospel, God can conduct souls to his Son by a star. Ah! Say not only by a star, but by a stone, a bird, a blade of grass, a drop of dew. Remember that Omnipotence has servants everywhere.” - Charles Spurgeon

There is some debate about who these Magi (also known as the Wise Men) really were, but it’s likely that they were high-ranking Persian officials. It’s also likely that the Persians had knowledge of a coming Messiah through Daniel’s time in Babylon many years before, when he rose to power and influence there. These wise men probably traveled with a small army accompanying them on the finest Persian stallions, and this journey probably took a long time. 

Unbeknownst to the Wise Men, King Herod had commissioned them, hoping that they would find Jesus and relay His location so that he could have Jesus killed. The Wise Men had hearts that were prepared to meet Immanuel, and God led them to Jesus through the means of a shining star. I love the way Spurgeon puts it: “Remember that Omnipotence has servants everywhere.” 

The Magi approached God with open hearts yearning to worship Jesus, and God used a star to point them in the direction they ought to go. God does the same with us when we approach Him humbly and expectantly. His desire for you is to live an abundant and joyful life completely satisfied in Him. It’s not always as clear as a shining star that guides us, but God will use people, places, and things—often in unexpected ways—to point you to Jesus. If you seek Him, you will find Him.

Read Matthew 2:1–12, and allow it to capture your imagination. Reflect on experiences when God used people, places, or things to lead you to Jesus.