NOTED ASTROLOGERS from Persia traveled thousands of miles into a country they were not familiar with, amongst a people they didn’t know anything about, to see a King that was not theirs. Where they had heard this new star indicated the birth of the Jewish King is not stated, but standing before Herod, months later, it is clear they didn’t expect him to react negatively and hadn’t heard the prophecy of Bethlehem.
Nativity sets are always inaccurate, showing these men, of an uncertain number, as standing before the baby Jesus, when He was probably around age two. But what is also missed from this story is that these men searched for and found who they were looking for. They took great time to search for an infant they had no way of knowing even existed.
And what of their return? What impact did that moment have, face-to-face, with the infant King? We make a big deal of the three gifts, what they were, what they symbolize, what their purpose was. But the story is not about the Magi or the gifts, the story is that people who were not Jews searched for the King of the Jews. The story is that after they found Him, after they worshiped, they were never the same.
Commentaries speculate that these men were from Persia, possibly the area where Daniel and his three friends were taken into captivity. How much this opens up the story! How incredible that God in heaven, who set the plan of the birth of the Messiah into motion over thousands of years, had prepared these men far in advance of this moment in time. What impact did they have upon their return? Did they proclaim it to all who would listen? Did they tell those who didn’t believe they would succeed? “We found the King!”
A baby born in a stable, a King, the Savior of the world, the Son of God sent to earth to redeem all of mankind, began to change lives before He could even walk and talk.
We seldom see our lives further ahead than our current footsteps. We see the house we live in right now, the job we’re stuck in, the circumstances that we like or dislike. We complain about people, politicians. We are shortsighted, living minute-by-minute in frustration, when the God in heaven, before the earth was formed, prepared a Savior for us. Prepared a good life for us, and a future filled with hope.
Wouldn’t the God who took generations, millennia, to fulfill His Word, to save the people He’d created, because His love for them was so great, the God who promised abundant, eternal life and healing and prosperity, not also have a plan prepared for each one of us? God sees in detail, in advance. He was not afraid to send His Son to earth. He was not worried that His plan might fail. And He sees each one of those saved because of His death and Resurrection and has each of them in His hand.
His plans are lavish and generous as He is lavish and generous. His desire for us is reward, peace, and success. He sees the broad scope, mankind from Genesis to Revelation, and beyond it into eternity. He who began time will end time in His manner in the way He’s set out to do it, and all who believe will rejoice to see it.
Suzanne D. Williams, Author