“After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magia from the east came to Jerusalem”
Matthew 2:1 NIV
Read: Matthew 2:1-7
Do you have a Nativity displayed for Christmas? How many ‘wise men’ or ‘kings’ do you have displayed? Do you know how many wise men actually came to worship the newborn KING? If you think three…you might be right…or not.
While their coming to bow to JESUS is well documented in scripture, the number of kings from the east are really not known. We know of the three gifts they brought, but not of how many came. There was likely a caravan of several very educated men who were familiar with the Old Testament and well aware of Jewish teachings. This caravan could have been quite large, with helpers to bring the riches loaded upon upon camels, numbering perhaps a dozen or more travelers. The number of three is not detailed anywhere in the Bible. It was not until the sixth century this number was discussed and then several hundred years later until there were additional writings of these three wise men’s journey. All in all, it does not really matter if there were two, three or more. We also hold in tradition the names of these three wise men. But, check your Bibles; there is no Biblical record of the names of the wise men. What is important is they came to worship GOD’S SON as prophesied.
What other things do we associate with Christmas that are pure tradition and not part of the real reason for the season? We put up Christmas trees, sparkling lights and hang mistletoe from the center of a door frame. These are great fun traditions, yet the birth of our SAVIOUR is not about these things.
We need to be careful of traditions. When we allow the tradition to be created idols, we are in trouble. These traditions and customs can be very dangerous to our true faith. Following tradition if we are not prepared can cause us to wander from the truth of our LORD’S scripture.
Enjoy these traditions, keep them alive for your future generations. They can be part of our heritage. But, keep them in proper perspective. In two days, we celebrate the birth of our LORD and SAVIOUR. HIS birth, life and resurrection are always above all else.
Today’s prayer: “LORD JESUS, Thank you for coming to earth to fulfill the promises of our FATHER. Help me keep all things this Christmas in proper perspective and keep YOU above all else. Amen.”