Today’s Reading: Matthew 1:1-2:12 (additional reading: Psalm 1:1-6 & Proverbs 1:1-6 )
Welcome to a new year! Thank all of you who joined me last year for a journey through the Old Testament. In 2019, we will continue our journey through the Bible by studying the New Testament together. Again I will be using the reading plan created by TheOneYear Bible, so if you want to follow along you can pick one of these Bibles up at your local Christian Book Store / Online or follow along via their website: http://www.oneyearbibleonline.com
The story of the wise men visiting the Christ child is an intriguing one. These men began a long trip to Israel simply because a particular star was in the sky, alerting them to the birth of the king of the Jews. They travelled a long way and finally meet the Christ child in person. I believe it this is more than just a story meant to entertain us, it is meant to teach us something today, about seeking Christ. “The Wise Still Seek Him.”
God makes every effort to reach every person who is far away from Him. If God can reach pagan Gentile astrologers, he is still working on people who we may think are too far gone. God never gives up on anyone and he uses whatever means he can to help lead them to Christ. In this case, God sent them a message using an astronomical event, a star, to signal to them that they needed to search for the child born as king of the Jews. God comes to us in ways we can understand, He makes it relevant to us where we are at.
God wants us to diligently seek him – We need more than knowledge about Christ we need to seek out Christ. The danger we fall into is thinking that by knowing about Jesus is enough. The truth is we can have all the knowledge of the Bible, we can follow God’s commandments, and still miss what the Christian faith is all about, seeking Christ until we find him. It may have taken the magi 12 days, 3 months perhaps even 2 years to get to Bethlehem. That journey cost them time, money, and it cost them their precious gifts but they had faith and made an effort to seek out the Christ.
We need to worship Christ – Wise men offered valuable gifts, what do we offer God? Worship is not an option with Christ. We need to worship him. Once the wise men reached Jesus it says the first thing they did was worship, just like the shepherds who had already visited Jesus and worshipped by singing praises to God.
We need to continue to be open to God’s Spirit – The wise men obeyed God’s direction by not returning to Herod. The journey to the Christ and their reward of faith had taught them to remain open to God’s leading. There is never a point in our lives when we can say that we’ve arrived in the sense that we’ve got the Christian life all figured out. We need to seek him, we need to worship him, but these aren’t a one-time event. We must continue to remain open to God’s leading.
How is God leading and speaking to you at the beginning of this new year?
Father, Thank You for speaking to us in ways we can understand and directing our path so that we can find You. Help us to bring our worship to You and continue to seek You each day of this new year. In Jesus name, Amen