Wednesday, September 1, 2010

If it felt so right, why did it turn out wrong? -- Matt 2: 1-2

"Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,
Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him." (Matt 2: 1-2)

Could there be any doubt that the star they'd seen was most unusual? Could any of them question what he had felt on seeing that star, the way he'd simply known that this signified the coming of a very special Jewish their fathers had been hearing about since the days when Daniel served Darius?

A wise man knows that knowledge comes and goes, but that experience of spiritual certainty was more than ordinary knowledge. A wise man knows that some feelings are worth following across the desert, are worth giving up wealth to purchase frankincense, gold, myrrh. Those wise men knew that seeing that star meant they should drop everything and see the King of Israel's newborn son.

So they sold possessions. They bought the best presents and provisions for the journey. These easterners traveled west in past the borders of the Roman Empire, farther west than they'd ever been before, and found--nothing. There was Herod, yes, this was Jerusalem, sure enough. But no crying baby. Not even a toddler crawling around the floor. They'd been wrong, absolutely wrong. It was obvious--no king had been born in this house; there was nothing any star could do to change the reality that was right before their eyes!

"Can I help you?" said Herod.

And they were about to shrug, turn around, hang their heads, head home. About to stop watching fickle stars now and forever. About to forget the whole delusion that is Hope, about to give up their wisdom for good old realism and practicality.

But then one of them said, "Where is he that is born King of the Jews?"

And the others chimed in, "We saw the star. We know we saw the star. If he isn't here, where exactly can we go to find and worship him?"

Maybe the stars don't lie. Maybe the feelings we've felt are worth crossing the desert for really are worth every sacrifice.

Oh, but all that doesn't make it easy to follow God past so many of our assumptions and expectations!


  1. James- Did you play the innkeeper in the New Testament video about the good Samaritan?!

    Natasha M.



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