Summary: From the story of the Wise men that traveled afar, we today can learn key principles to how we should respond to the birth and life of Christ.
Wise Men from Everywhere
Wise men from the East, came to worship the Christ child. How far had they traveled? How had these men seen the star in the East? How did they know it was the Messiah’s star? It is impossible to answer these questions.
From the East came the wise men, seeking to worship a child with gifts of meaning. Gold was a tribute to a king, frankincense a gift for deity, and myrrh symbolic of the suffering to come.
Perhaps it is a good thing that we don not know too much about these wise men, for we can see them as representatives of all who have the true wisdom of the Spirit that causes them to follow by faith the heavenly light that ever guides them in their quest for the real meaning of life. The wise men represent all in every age who have been people of faith and action. Their message for all who would be wise in this century is that we should seek wisdom.
The poet Jean Carter Cochran questions these wise men in imagination in a poem that reads:
Wise man, tell me, what did you see
That made you travel so far?
Stranger, I followed the radiant light
Of a splendid, flaming star.
Wise man, tell me, what did you hear
In that land where you did stray?
Stranger, I heard an angel’s song
That rings in my heart always.
Wise man, tell me, what did you find
That make your countenance so bright?
Stranger, I found a heavenly King
Born on that Holy Night.
Tonight I want us to take a look at the Wise Men that we read about, and see just what we can learn from their actions at the birth of Christ and how we should act as Christians today.
I. The Wise men of old would tell people everywhere to follow the light that God gives.
a. The birth of Jesus was signaled by a supernatural phenomena – a star
i. If at his death the earth trembled, the veil of the temple was torn, and the sun refused to shine, we should not think it strange that at his birth a star stood over his cradle while a great multitude of the heavenly host sang, “Glory to God in the highest.”
b. We cannot tell what start the wise men saw.
i. It was their profession to watch the heavens.
ii. Some heavenly brilliance indicated to them the entry of a king into the world.
c. There are many events and inward hungers, desires, and conflicts, which, if we were to recognize and interpret them properly, would lead us to seek the Savior who can bring meaning, beauty, purpose and power to our lives.
II. The wise men of old, rejoiced when they found the Savior.
a. Christ produces joy in the hearts of those who seek and find him as Lord and Savior.
b. Many desire the fruit of faith in Christ before they receive him as Lord and Savior.
c. You must let Christ come into your heart if you want to experience joy and peace.
d. A poet put it best when he wrote:
If Christ a thousand times in Bethlehem be born,
Until He is born in me, my soul is all forlorn.
III. The wise men of old, worshipped the Savior
a. They fell down before him and paid homage to him as the King of Kings
b. No person should worship that which is less than the highest.
i. No person should worship anything or anyone less than God.
c. Worship is the highest and most noble activity of the soul.
d. Genuine worship is the climax of wisdom.
i. Only through worship do we accept the essential dignity of humankind.
e. The wise men of old found in the Child a revelation of god, and they worshiped Him.
IV. The wise men of old would encourage people to open their treasures and present gifts to the Christ.
a. According to the Bible, the wise men did this spontaneously.
b. Each man gave his best gift to Christ – his utmost to the Highest.
c. The wise men perceived that the Christ child was not just a baby, but the King to whom the tribute of God was rightfully due.
d. It is not astonishing that the gift of frankincense should symbolize that worship to offered only to deity?
e. How utterly beyond explanation is the last gift of myrrh, foreshadowing of life of sacrifice and suffering, prefiguring Gethsemane and Calvary.
f. The nature of the gifts is most significant.
i. Gold, the king of metals, is a gift suitable for a king.
1. Jesus was born to be a King.
2. He was to reign, not by force, but by love; and he was to rule over people’s hearts, not from a throne, but from a cross.