THE THREE WISEMEN
So, who were these "Three Wise Men?" Traditionally the Western Christian Church commonly identifies them as:
Melchor: A Persian Scholar
Gasper: An Indian Scholar
Balthazar: An Arabian Scholar
FOLLOWING A STAR TO BETHLEHEM
Matthew tells us that the Wise Men found Jesus by following
a star... which has become known to us as
"The Star of Bethlehem." There are those who would point out that 'stars don't move'... and so many scholars today believe they followed a planet, which without a telescope could be mistaken for a star. I on the other hand choose to believe God's Word, which states in Matthew 2:2 that it was not only a star... but it was HIS star... or "Jesus' Star!"
GIFTS FOR THE BABY JESUS
Now, it was customary for foreign emissaries and ambassadors to bring gifts to 'court the favor' of royalty. This was especially true at the time of royal births. So, when the Wise Men came they presented their gifts to both Joseph and Mary... for Jesus. Each of these three gifts represented an aspect of who Jesus is and what His mission was to fulfill. We don't have any knowledge of the amounts of each gift, but... it is the message they conveyed about Jesus that is most important!
And, If you've ever been to a children's "Christmas Pageant" you might recall... three boys dressed as these wise men and they are bearing gifts. While we all know what Gold is... did you ever wonder about the Frankincense and Myrrh?? I have!
1. GOLD: Reserved for Royalty, the Wise Men had told King Herod that they were looking to see the one born, who was "King of the Jews." They recognized Jesus as being a royal but how and why? These Wise Men were scholars of the sky and its signs, the importance of the star in the sky was a sign of a magnificent and a spectacular birth. Whether the gift of gold was in jewelry... coins... or just pieces... we are not told... but the fact that it was gold... meant that Jesus was and still is Royalty!
2. FRANKINCENSE: Although an unusual gift, it was a highly valued commodity and somewhat rare. The Jewish people's use of frankincense was a direct correlation to the Worshiping of God. The Jews prayed before the "Alter of Incense..." which was always kept burning and the incense used was frankincense and when it was burning it gave off a sweet smelling white smoke. The smoke rising represents the prayers of the people rising to their God in heaven. This was the only use for frankincense... reserved for worshiping God, so in presenting it to Jesus... it shows that He alone was indeed... divine!
3. MYRRH: The most odd of gifts was extremely valuable and was used for a number of things... of which the most common use was perfume and it was sometimes used in a wealthy home to create a pleasant fragrance. The major use of myrrh was for burials... placed on the clothes to wrap bodies in for burial and to help prevent the smell of decay following death. Presented to Jesus this was to convey the fact... that one day Jesus would die... as our King of Kings and Savior.
MEANING OF THE GIFTS TO JESUS
So we find that... the Gold represented Jesus as being Royal, the Frankincense supported the fact that Jesus was of a divine nature... and the Myrrh was the importance of the mortality of Jesus.
When these Wise Men laid down their treasures before Joseph and Mary... they also worshiped Jesus! They did not come from afar... just to court favor... but to proclaim that they believed "Jesus to be the... KING OF KINGS."
WORSHIP IN HIS PRESENCE
To worship... and enter into the presence of Jesus... is a beautiful element of our relationship with Him! It is there that the Holy Spirit ministers love, healing and the many blessings we receive from our Lord and Savior!
So I would ask: Who do you worship...?
And... Who do you say is your KING of KINGS?