Today, I feel blessed to have experienced intimacy with Jesus, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
The circumstances of his birth continue to amaze me. This year I am intrigued about the Magi, the wise men who searched for Jesus, I went on a brief journey to read about the Magi or as the bible describe them “the wise men”. Questions stormed my mind; Who were they? How old were they? Where were they from?
I also grew eager to learn more about the gifts they brought to baby Jesus; gold, frankincense and myrrh.
Reflecting on my reflections this Christmas, I had to laugh at myself, because the story about the wise men visiting Jesus, is not new to me. But then again, some of you can identify with me, when I say, it is part of our experience with the Word of God, there is never a dull moment and even though you would’ve read a certain passage before, it can seem completely new to you a year later. There is always something within its pages, that hits you like a splash of cold water on your face, refreshing your interest in the stories told and the truth of Jesus and his mission on earth.
So, this Christmas, I am not trying to get all my questions answered, but I am just basking in the story of the wise men and the gifts that they brought to Jesus. I understand, that we do not know, for sure, how many wise men visited Jesus, but we knew they were wise. The depth of their wisdom and knowledge about the stars, suggests maturity and seniority and some knowledge of astronomy.
My inspiring message to you today is; The wise men set out to look for Jesus diligently, they were determined to find him, being lead by the moving star. They pursued until they were successful. They sought him with the intention to worship Him, bringing gifts of significance and worth.
This got me thinking of man and his search for God. He is often distracted, unlike the wise men. He is often wavering in his steps toward God, forward then backward. There is so much around him that can hinder him from completing his search and entering into the most valuable and meaningful relationship of all.
The wise men brought gifts of significance; we too ought to offer our gifts to the Lord, not to show off, but simply to honour Him as King.
GOLD was used in the Old Testament times to decorate the Temple of God. The Temple of God was a sight to behold. GOLD is always fitting for a King and the King of Kings was certainly no different. A present of GOLD was certainly in line with the Glorious and Holy entrance of the Christ Child Jesus, the King who would eventually occupy the Throne of David.
MYRRH was of high value in those days, it was used for medicinal purposes and in God’s temple, as part of the mixture of an anointing oil. In Exodus Chapter 30, Myrrh is referred to as one of the principle spices. Moses was commanded to take Myrrh, Sweet Cinnamon, Calamus, Cassia and olive oil and make it into an Holy Oil for anointing purposes. I also observed from the scripture, that Myrrh as well as Cassia were the dominant spices in the mixture. Some of these spices are not very familiar to me and I am looking forward to finding out more about them.
The precious holy oil, a recipe, specifically given by God, was used to anoint the tabernacle of the congregation, the ark of the testimony, the table and all the vessels, as well as the altar of incense. The word of God says, “And thou shalt sanctify them, that they may be most holy: whatsoever touches them shall be holy.” Further, the oil was used to anoint Aaron and his sons, the priestly family. What a gift of significance!
Lying in the Manger was the perfect son of God, sent to complete the worthiest mission that would qualify him to be our Most Holy Priest! We no longer need Aaron and his sons to offer sacrifices or intercede on our behalf. That’s what Christmas is about. If you are still praying to someone other than God, you are yet to understand the reason Jesus came.
FRANKINCENSE, the third gift, it is also spoken of in Exodus chapter 30, verse 34 in particular. God continues to give Moses instructions and tells him to take sweet spices like stacte, onycha and galbanum and mix it with PURE FRANKINCENSE, making with it a perfume, pure and holy. This perfume was to be used in the Tabernacle as God met with his people. This mixture was not to be used selfishly but only in the Tabernacle for the purpose instructed.
Leviticus chapter 2, tells us more of its use. Moses is instructed that when anyone had to offer a sacrifice of fine flour, oil had to be poured upon it, as well as frankincense. It was to be a memorial offering made by fire, a sweet savor unto the Lord. Frankincense and the words “holy”, “pure” and “sacrifice” belonged together.
The gift of Frankincense to Jesus, was certainly appropriate. He was the perfect sacrifice.
Now, this takes me back to the Character of the three wise men, I believe they were truly wise men who desired to see their King and Worship them. I believe they were honourable men of integrity, consistent with wise men. The story of the Wise Men and their gifts, would forever live in our hearts, as we embrace their experience and identify with their search for the King and their worship towards him.
One of my favourite moments this Christmas was worshiping God with my family. We sang the song “We Three Kings of Orient Are” and then “Noel” sung by Lauren Daigle. Of course, I wanted more, so I continued my day, lifting up praises to my Holy King, no longer a babe in the Manger, but my Most Holy, Sinless High Priest. I am adequately represented by him before the Father.
And so, if Christ has not accomplished what he came to do in your life, this season will be quite fitting to make his sacrifice count. It is not about whether you have been baptized, confirmed or blessed or very active in church. It is about being set free from the bondage of sin, religion and fear, through repentance from your sins and acceptance of God’s way, as the only true way to real joy and peace and eternal life.
That’s what Christmas is all about!!