Summary: Why some people worship Jesus (the Wisemen) and some don’t (Herod).
The difference between those who worship Jesus and those who do not is the state of their heart.
Herod did not want Jesus worshiped. He desired no rival to his position and power.
The wisemen on the other hand were anxious to worship the newborn king.
When you examine the hearts of the wisemen you detect characteristics that will help your worship arrive at authenticity.
1. A heart that is right for worship plans ahead.
Many people do not consider how important planning for worship can be. We expect the minister to prepare his sermon and the worship leaders to prepare the music and drama.
The main people who ought to plan ahead for worship are the worshippers! All of us!
Why did the wisemen see Christ’s star in the east?
Because they were looking for it!
Why did they bring gifts?
Because they intended to worship!
When worshippers don’t get enough rest before coming to worship, when they contribute to distractions in the worship service, when they don’t bring a tithe and/or offering, when they don’t participate in the time of praise, when they don’t pray before and during the worship time, and when they don’t display any enthusiasm - they prove they did not come prepared to worship.
2. A heart that is right for worship participates with joy!
Herod and Jerusalem were "troubled" at the announcement of the birth of Christ, but the thought brought joy to the wisemen. (Verse 10)
What does the thought of worship do to you? Does it bring you joy or does it cause unrest?
Herod was stressed because, if Jesus were king, then he couldn’t be king. I think we sometimes have the same problem with worship. We need to get our selfish ambitions and our focus off of ourself and direct it to God.
When we bow to God as the wisemen did we are saying we acknowledge Jesus as our king. That is where the joy comes from!
3. A heart that is right for worship knows Jesus personally.
The wisemen didn’t come from the east because they needed a vacation.
They didn’t come because they didn’t have anything better to do.
They wanted to know Jesus. They wanted to meet him personally. They didn’t send a representative.
True worship begins with a relationship.
If you don’t already have a personal relationship with Christ then this Christmas receive the original Christmas gift. God gave His Son for you. Ask Him to begin a personal relationship with Him today and then begin worshipping Him with all your heart!