Epiphany ~ January 5

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Epiphany ~ January 5

The Magi’s Adoration of the Christ

Psalm 72:1-14Isaiah 60:1-6Ephesians 3:1-12Matthew 2:1-12

Epiphany marks the visit of the Magi. These strangers from the East were wise-men, wizards, astrologers, alchemists, and maybe even kings. We don’t know that much about them and the names that we know them by, Caspar, Melchior, and Balthazar, come from several centuries after the fact. All we know is that there were wise pagans who brought gifts to Jesus rousing the paranoia of King Herod the Great.

Their visit seems a little odd but it was extremely important. It represents Jesus’ kingship extending beyond Israel to all of the earth. The wise and powerful of the world bow down to a baby in his mother’s arms. We don’t know exactly how these wise men understood the message of the star but they knew that the child Jesus was worthy of adoration. Kings came to worship him.

Jesus is not only the savior of the people of Israel but of all people of the world. It brings to mind Exodus 19:5-6:

Now therefore, if you obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my treasured possession out of all the peoples. Indeed, the whole earth is mine, but you shall be for me a priestly kingdom and a holy nation.

God’s plan was to redeem the world through his nation of “priest-kings”, the people of Israel. Jesus fulfilled this task. The Magi’s visit is a brilliant foreshadowing of how Christ’s message transcends all barriers of country, culture, and ethnicity. May we follow Jesus, fulfilling our role as “priest-kings” in God’s new creation including worshiping the King come to us as a babe.

Here is this week’s collect. May God bless you as you read and pray this week and throughout the year!

O God, by the leading of a star you manifested your only Son to the Peoples of the earth: Lead us, who know you now by faith, to your presence, where we may see your glory face to face; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Paul Hill