The Three Magi and The Greatest Gift We Never Knew

Matthew 2:1-12

By Rev. Dr. Sergio E. ArevaloTuloy Po Kayo! (Welcome!). Read more ... », Jr.

Eagle Rock Lutheran ChurchThe Three Temptations of Jesus. Read more ... », Los AngelesMy Prayer During the 2014 National Day of Prayer Celebration . Read more ... », CAHeaven or UFO?: The Liberating Words of Jesus. Read more ... »

January 05, 2014

INTRODUCTION

If you are going to visit a friendLazarus’ Raising as a Proof of Resurrection. Read more ... » who just gave birthYou Have No Right to Keep it!. Read more ... » to a baby boyPeople Were Hungry, Look What the Boy Did to Feed Them All. Read more ... », what would you giveThree Deeds That Show the Intentions of the Shepherd and the Thief. Read more ... » as a gift? Maybe diaper, cans of milk, or crib? Did you experience to monitor when would be the birth of your niece or nephew or grandson or granddaughter? Will you travel from AmericaIn Everything Give Eucharist!. Read more ... » to the PhilippinesProphecy About the Philippines in 2009, Compare With Current Situation. Read more ... » just to visit your relatives who will give birth to your grandson or granddaughter?

I admire the magi who traveled far and wide just to visit a baby boy who was just born. Not only that they studied when and where he would be born.

Who and what these wise men were?Real wise men

MatthewLeaders Question This Man on What Authority He is Doing Those Benevolence, They Could Not Reason Out When He Responds. Read more ... » Henry says, the magi in this passage was called Magou – Magicians. Magou was used in a goodThe Four Kinds of Seeds: A Reflection of our Spirituality. Read more ... » sense; the Magi among the Persians were their philosophers and their priestsHow Does Jesus Prepare His Disciples for Missions?. Read more ... », however they would not accept that their kingsThe Three Lessons of Palm Sunday. Read more ... » were enrolled among the Magi.

Others think magou dealt in unlawful arts; the wordProphecy About the Philippines in 2009, Compare With Current Situation. Read more ... » is used of Simon, the sorcerer (Acts 8:9, Acts 8:11), and of Elymas, the sorcerer (Acts 13:6). WellJesus’ Strategy of Evangelism. Read more ... », whatever sort of magi they were before, now they began to be wise men indeed when they set themselves to enquire after ChristThree Things Required in Discipleship. Read more ... ».

According to the Ethiopians, these wise men were three, whose names they give us; the nameHeaven or UFO?: The Liberating Words of Jesus. Read more ... » of him that offered the goldCome! Share Your Master’s Joy!. Read more ... », was Annoson; he that offered the frankincense, was Allytar; and he that offered the myrrh, Kyssad (biblestudytools.com).

Oxford Bible argues that the wise men (GreekThe Cost of Following Jesus. Read more ... », magoi) were literate, political“Give Back to Caesar the Things that are Caesar's”. Read more ... » officials in the courts of Parthia, Armenia or regions east of Judea.

Foreign regimes often sent“As the Father has Sent me, so I Send You!”. Read more ... » emissaries to greetWhich Do You Prefer? Old Practices or New Practices?. Read more ... » and give giftsCome! Share Your Master’s Joy!. Read more ... » to new kings or rulers. The visit highlights the conflict between the kingWhy the King Killed Those Who Did Not Attend His Son’s Wedding?. Read more ... » of IsraelA Caregiver Wows Israel's X Factor; UK Wows For This Pinoy. Read more ... » chosen by GodThe Parable of the Wheat and the Weeds. Read more ... », JesusI Doubt, Ergo, I Believe. Read more ... », and the king of Israel chosen by the Romans, Herod“Give Back to Caesar the Things that are Caesar's”. Read more ... ». A similar account of “magi” is in the Roman“Into Your Hands”. Read more ... » writers Dio 63:7 and Suetonius, LifeHeaven or UFO?: The Liberating Words of Jesus. Read more ... » of Nero 13.

Who were really those magi? This we are sure of,

(1) That magi were Gentiles, and not belonging to the commonwealth of Israel. The JewsLeaders Question This Man on What Authority He is Doing Those Benevolence, They Could Not Reason Out When He Responds. Read more ... » regarded not Christ, but these GentilesDoes God Repent in Nineveh?. Read more ... » enquired him out. Note, Many times those who are nearest to the means, are furthest from the end. See Mat 8:11, Mat 8:12.

(2) That magi were scholars. They dealt in arts, curious arts; good scholars should be good ChristiansNew Year, New Creation. Read more ... », and then they complete“It is Finished!”. Read more ... » their learning when they learn Christ.

(3) That magi were men of the east, who were noted for their soothsaying, Isa. 2:6. Arabia is called the landCreatio ex Nihilo: Creation Through Amazing Words and Power. Read more ... » of the east (Gen. 25:6), and the Arabians are called men of the east, Jdg 6:3. The presents they brought were the products of that country; the Arabians had done homage to David and Solomon as types of Christ. Jethro and Job were of that country. More than this we have not to say of them.

The Roman ChurchProphecy About the Philippines in 2009, Compare With Current Situation. Read more ... » believed that the magi were three kings. Before they were fourteen kings who later lie buried in Colen/ Cologne, Germany, but their position was modified later on into three kings. Of these Magi, the first named Melchior, an aged man“Give Back to Caesar the Things that are Caesar's”. Read more ... » with a long beard, offered gold: the second, Jasper, a bearless youth, offered frankincense: the third, Balthasar, a black or moor, with a large spreading beard, offered myrrh (hymnsandcarolsofchristmas.com).

How comeFollow Me: The Cost of Following Jesus. Read more ... » did the magi knowHow to Know the Presence of the Holy Spirit?. Read more ... » the coming“Ready or not, here I come...again.”. Read more ... » of the MessiahThe Obedience of Joseph. Read more ... »?

Probably the magi studied the Old TestamentThe Messiah as The Lamb of God. Read more ... », especially NumbersJesus is the Redeemer. Read more ... » 24:17,

“I shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not nigh: there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel, and shall smite the corners of Moab, and destroy all the children of Sheth.”

And Micah 5:2,

“But thou, Beth–lehem Ephrathah, which art little to be among the thousands of Judah, out of thee shall one come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth are from of old, from everlasting.”

The magi brought three or more importantThree Important Teachings of Jesus. Read more ... » gifts for Jesus:

gold__frankincense_and_myrrh__large

GIFT NO. 1: GOLD

Gold was known from the earliest times (Gen 2:11). It was principally used for ornaments (Gen 24:22). It was very abundantThree Deeds That Show the Intentions of the Shepherd and the Thief. Read more ... » (1Chro 22:14; Nahum 2:9; Daniel 3:1). Many tons of it were used in connection with the templeJesus is the Redeemer. Read more ... » (2Chro 1:15). It was found in Arabia, Sheba, and Ophir (1Kings 9:28; 1Kings 10:1; Job 28:16), but not in Palestine.

 

GIFT NO. 2: FRANKINCENSE

(Heb. lebonah; Gr. libanos, i.e., “white”), an odorous resin imported from Arabia (Isa 60:6; Jer 6:20), yet also growing in Palestine (Song of Solomon 4:14). It was one of the ingredients in the perfume of the sanctuary (Exo 30:34), and was used as an accompaniment of the meat-offeringThe Messiah as The Lamb of God. Read more ... » (Lev 2:1; 2:16; 6:15; 24:7). When burnt it emitted a fragrant odor, and hence the incense became a symbol of the Divine name (Mal 1:11; Song of Solomon 1:3) and an emblem of prayerPracticing Piety in Front of People. Read more ... » (Psa 141:2; LukeThe Angel of The Lord Announces the Good News!. Read more ... » 1:10; Rev 5:8; 8:3).

This frankincense, or olibanum, used by the Jews in the temple services is not to be confounded with the frankincense of modern commerce, which is an exudation of the Norway spruce fir, the Pinus abies. It was probably a resin from the Indian treeThe Four Kinds of Seeds: A Reflection of our Spirituality. Read more ... » known to botanists by the name of Boswellia serrata or thurifera, which grows to the height of forty feet.

GIFT NO. 3: MYRRH

In Hebrew“Into Your Hands”. Read more ... », myrrh is called mor.

(1) First mentioned as a principal ingredient in the holy anointing oil“Ready or not, here I come...again.”. Read more ... » (Exo 30:23). It formed part of the gifts brought by the wise men from the east, who came to worship the infant Jesus (Mat 2:11). It was used in embalming (JohnThe Transfiguration of Jesus. Read more ... » 19:39), also as a perfume (Ester 2:12; PsalmPGF the Lord!. Read more ... » 45:8; Prov 7:17). It was a custom of the Jews to give those who were condemned to deathLazarus’ Raising as a Proof of Resurrection. Read more ... » by crucifixionThe Persecution of the King of the Jews. Read more ... »wineThis Man Trusts His Workers But Look What They Do to His Son and Messengers. His Envoys Do Not Return so He Comes Back with Vengeance!. Read more ... » mingled with myrrh” to produce insensibility. This drugged wine was probably partaken of by the two malefactors, but when the Roman soldiers pressed it upon Jesus “he received it not” (Mark“Give Back to Caesar the Things that are Caesar's”. Read more ... » 15:23).

This was the gum or viscid white liquid which flows from a tree resembling the acacia, found in Africa and Arabia, the Balsamodendron myrrha of botanists. The “bundle of myrrh” in Song of Solomon 1:13 is rather a “bag” of myrrh or a scent-bag.

(2) Another word lot is also translated “myrrh” (Gen 37:25; 43:11 “ladanum”). What was meant by this word is uncertain. It has been thought to be the chestnutThe Three Lessons of Palm Sunday. Read more ... », mastich, stacte, balsam, turpentine, pistachio nut, or the lotus. It is probably correctly rendered by the Latin word ladanum, the Arabic ladan, an aromatic juice of a shrub called the Cistus or rock rose, which has the same qualities, though in a slight degree, of opium, whence a decoction of opium is called laudanum. This plant was indigenous to Syria and Arabia.

GIFT NO. 4: OTHER GIFTS

Verse 2:11 mentions first the “gifts” which we don’t know what exactly are they, but the early tradition of giving was that they were giving the best products of their land such as in the case of fatherHeaven or UFO?: The Liberating Words of Jesus. Read more ... » Israel who told his childrenJesus is Missing!. Read more ... » to bring balm, honey, pistachio nuts and almonds to the man who happened to be his lost sonThe Angel of The Lord Announces the Good News!. Read more ... », JosephThe Obedience of Joseph. Read more ... » (Gen. 43:11).

Queen Sheba offered the following to King Solomon: spices, gold, and precious stones (I Kings 10:2, 10):

 

THE GREATEST GIFT: JESUS THE MESSIAH

In this holiday season, ChristmasThe Messiah was Born in a Manger. Read more ... » is commercialized. For some people Christmas is not celebrated without gifts received from others. The act of giving of the magi is more commemorated that the gift given by the Messiah.

The gifts of the magi are already gone, but the gift of the Messiah is long lasting, and has far reaching effectThe Eternal Reward of Giving a Cup of Cold Water. Read more ... ». The gift of the Messiah is life, and bought by His life on the crossThree Things Expected of a Disciple. Read more ... ».

The gift of the Messiah is the salvationA Man Tries to Walk on the Water, Look What Does He Get. Read more ... ». The gift of God is eternalThe Logos Becomes Flesh. Read more ... » life! John 3New Year, New Creation. Read more ... »:16-17 says,

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved” (KJV).

Do you want this kind of gift rather than Christmas cards, IpadThe Transfiguration of Jesus. Read more ... », Iphone, laptop, new clothesWhy the King Killed Those Who Did Not Attend His Son’s Wedding?. Read more ... », new jeans, new shoes, new houseHeaven or UFO?: The Liberating Words of Jesus. Read more ... », new car or bonus? I bet!

Everybody can receiveThe Eternal Reward of Giving a Cup of Cold Water. Read more ... » this gift of God. We will just express our desire to have this gift. How? BELIEVEHeaven or UFO?: The Liberating Words of Jesus. Read more ... » IN JESUS CHRISTMy Prayer During the 2014 National Day of Prayer Celebration . Read more ... »!

nativity_13

Dr. Curtis Hutson says the Greatest Gift of all is:

(1) An Unsolicited Gift. Many times Christmas gifts are the result of a specific request, but not so with God’s Christmas Gift. His was an unsolicited Gift.

(2) An Unlimited Gift. Some department stores cater only to the very wealthy. The gifts they offer for sale are so expensive that the average person cannot purchase them. Some very poorLiberation Theology's Concept of "Poor". Read more ... » families are unable to enjoy gifts that are enjoyed by the middle class of society. But God’s Christmas Gift is unlimited. The blessedThe Eight Beatitudes: Principal Graces of a Christian. Read more ... » promiseThe Angel of The Lord Announces the Good News!. Read more ... » in John 3:16 is, “For God so loved the world…”

(3) An Unchanging Gift. Hebrews 13:8 declares, “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever.” Times changeThe Man Who Prepares Freeway for His Master. Read more ... », styles change, attitudes and tastes change, historyIn Everything Give Eucharist!. Read more ... » and math books change. Nearly everything we know of changes. But Jesus Christ is God’s unchanging Gift. His perfection demands His immutability.

(4) An Undeserved Gift. The very fact that salvation is a gift indicates that it is undeserved. If it is earned or deserved, it is no longer a gift. A gift is something offered with no strings attached. Salvation is wholly of graceNew Year, New Creation. Read more ... ». “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast” (Eph. 2:8,9).

(5) An Unclaimed Gift. “God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son,” but the whole worldJesus is Missing!. Read more ... » has not yet received Jesus Christ as SaviorThree Things Required in Discipleship. Read more ... »! Christ tasted death for every man, but every man is not trusting Christ for salvation. To millions of people, Jesus Christ is still a stranger.

 

CONCLUSION

Today is Epiphany Sunday, a ChristianI Doubt, Ergo, I Believe. Read more ... » festival held usually on January 6 in honor of the coming of the three magi to the infant Jesus Christ. But we should commemorate this day as the manifestationThe Man with Unclean Lips Sends by the King of the Armies. Read more ... » of God’s gift to humankind.

Last Christmas, I was contemplating how should I celebrate Christmas after our serviceGod Calls the Boy Rather than the Priest. Read more ... » here. Should I watch moviesThe Protagonist Narrates the Trailer of His Story, His Avid Fan Does not Like it. Read more ... »? Should I eat in the finest restaurant? Should I go to a great tourist spot? Should I visit one of you guys? I read these verses in Matthew 25The Judge-King Favors the Least: The Undocumented Aliens, etc.. Read more ... »:35-36:

For I was hungryThe Judge-King Favors the Least: The Undocumented Aliens, etc.. Read more ... », and ye gave me food: I was thirstyThe Judge-King Favors the Least: The Undocumented Aliens, etc.. Read more ... », and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sickLazarus’ Raising as a Proof of Resurrection. Read more ... », and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came to me.

Then it came to my mindI Doubt, Ergo, I Believe. Read more ... » to visit and prayProphecy About the Philippines in 2009, Compare With Current Situation. Read more ... » for two of my friends who just underwent medical procedures. After my visit, I was so surprised that they gave me a lot of gifts. Alleluia!

Related eBooks
None found.

Comments

comments

%d bloggers like this: