Summary: In today’s text we have the story of two kings who are poles apart. One is ruthless and his kingdom is fleeting and the other is God’s only begotten Son whose kingdom is forever (Luke 1:32- 33).

Matthew 2:1-12  Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem,  (2)  saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”  (3)  When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him;  (4)  and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born.  (5)  They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet:  (6)  “‘And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.’”  (7)  Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star had appeared.  (8)  And he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.”  (9)  After listening to the king, they went on their way. And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was.  (10)  When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.  (11)  And going into the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh.  (12)  And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.


Text Matthew 2:1 - 12

It has been said that in every heart there is a throne. Who sits on the throne as the king of our hearts?

Since Jesus came to us as the the Word made flesh we have to make a choice about how we will respond to Jesus in our lives. Even trying to sty neutral is making a choice. Jesus said we are either for Him or against Him (Matthew 12:30). We can never slight the role that eternity can have in that decision!

In today’s text we have the story of two kings who are poles apart. One is ruthless and his kingdom is fleeting and the other is God’s only begotten Son whose kingdom is forever (Luke 1:32- 33). One is self-centered and threatened by those who won’t bow down to him and the other is the One---our Messiah to whom every tongue must confess and every knee must bow that Jesus Christ is Lord (Philippians 2:9 -11)! One king built his kingdom on the foundation of his success and ego. Matthew 2:13 -16 mentions how Herod wanted to search for this new king to destroy him and ordered that all male babies that were under the age of 2 yrs old to make sure he got rid of this new born king. Jesus Christ, the other King is the Foundation upon which we must all build our lives if we want to have a home in heaven.

What three adjectives could you to describe King Herod? The three that come to my mind are haughty, hateful and incorrigible. What three adjectives would you use to describe Jesus? I choose these ---humility, hope and heaven.


What is the litmus test for our humility?

1) Autonomy: Do we seek the lime light or the back seat of the bus? Herod like to be in charge and resents it it when he is not.

2) Humility: Philippians 2:7 -8 says it the best …. [Jesus] emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.  (8)  And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross (ESV).

3) Litmus test: Consider how Winston Churchill put things into perspective. The story is told that “Once Winston Churchill was sitting on a platform waiting to speak to a large crowd gathered to hear him. The charabanc of the event leaned over and said, “Isn’t it exciting Mr. Churchill, that all these people came just to hear you speak?” Winston Churchill responded, “It is quite flattering but whenever I feel this way I always remember that if instead of making a political speech I was being hanged, the crowd would be twice as big.” (Steve May. The Story File. Peabody, Massachusetts: Hendrickson Publishing, 2000, p. 160). Do we let our accomplishments go to our heads? Or, are we like Winston Churchill who had a way to keep himself in check?

How does King Herod do with this test?

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