Summary: Lessons we can learn from the wise men.
Wise Guys – Christmas Message
Intro: To: All Southern USA Residents From: Santa
I regret to inform you that effective immediately, due a growing population, I will no longer be able to serve the southern USA on Christmas Eve. However, I have provided a replacement for you, my 3rd cousin, Bubba Claus. His side of the family is from the South Pole. There are a few differences b/w us that you need to know:
1 Instead of milk and cookies, Bubba Claus prefers RC Cola, pork rinds and moon pies.
2 Bubba Claus’ sleigh is pulled by flying coon dog instead of reindeer – Santa made the mistake of loaning Bubba his reindeer last year and now his head overlooks Bubba’s fireplace.
3 Instead of hearing, “On Comet, on Cupid, on Donner, and Blitzen…” You now hear, “On Earnhardt, on Wallace, On Gordon and Jarrett.”
4 The Classic Christmas movies, “Miracle on 31st Street” and “It’s a Wonderful Life” have been replaced by “Boss Hogg Saves Christmas” and “Smokey and the Bandit IV.”
5 Bubba Claus doesn’t wear a belt. Make sure you wife and children turn the other way when he bends over to put the presents under the tree.
Trans: As we enter these final days before Christmas, I would like for us to journey to Bethlehem to witness the birth of Jesus through the eyes of the wise men.
Text: Matthew 2:1-12
Truth: In nativity scenes we often arrange the wise men around the baby Jesus along w/ the shepherds and angels. But we know from the text that the wise men didn’t arrive on the night of Jesus’ birth – it was later.
Matthew 1:11 uses the word house instead of stable and child instead of baby. Based on vs. 16, we can infer that Jesus was likely 12-24 mo. old.
Note: Most assume there were 3 magi b/c of the 3 gifts – but we don’t actually know the number. We do know they were men from the region east of Israel who’d been traveling for following a strange star in the western sky. But they weren’t just following a star, they were searching for Messiah.
Note: These men weren’t magicians or astrologist but educated men in science and astronomy. They were men from Babylon familiar w/ the ancient writings of Daniel – who 600 years prior had been deported to Babylon from Jerusalem. He didn’t just escape the lion’s den – he also ruled and wrote about the coming Messiah. Daniel 9 says 483 years after Jerusalem rebuilt.
I A Diligent Search for God Always Leads to Jesus
Note: I don’t know what is more amazing – the number of people who were completely oblivious to the Messiah’s first coming or that these wise men from a far were Johnny on the spot.
If you really think about it – the Bible most certainly gives us the impression that only Anna, Simeon, and wise men were looking for Jesus.
The masses were hopeful for Messiah – but they were neither looking for Him nor did they recognize Him (even His disciple didn’t fully comprehend that Jesus was God in the flesh).
Note: I often speak w/ people who have never truly taken the time to search for God – most people search for what works for them – but they don’t really search for the truth.