Read Matthew 1
Jesus fulfills all prophecy concerning the promised Messiah: a descendant of Abraham and of David (Matt. 1:1-16), and His miraculous birth (1:18-25). Herod is troubled by the news of wise men (2:1-3). The enemy attempts to destroy the Lord's Plan of Salvation (2:13-18).
The wise men from the east followed His (the Messiah's) star (Matt. 2:2) on their long, difficult journey to Jerusalem, where they asked King Herod: Where is He that is born King of the Jews?
The wise men (magi) were the priests among the Persians, and were the intellectual and theological leaders of their nations. There was no similarity between these wise men and the present-day occult astrologers and fortune-tellers. While Daniel was in Babylon, he associated with the wise men of his day as one of them (Dan. 2:18). Undoubtedly, the wise men (4:6) knew both Daniel's and Baalam's prophecies of the Messiah (9:25-26; Num. 24:17). It is entirely conceivable that they were led to Jerusalem seeking the King of the Jews by being fully acquainted with the Book of Daniel.
One thing that could have kept the scribes and the chief priests in Jerusalem from joining the wise men in search of the Messiah-King was a closed mind. What could Gentile "outsiders" teach them? And, without a doubt, they would have feared Herod because he would have considered them as traitors.
Herod is typical of an enemy of Christ; he befriends the "wise men" only so far as it would serve his own ends. Like all Jerusalem (Matt. 2:3), the world is often troubled concerning any interest in Christ. But true wise men will settle for nothing less than His presence (2:1-2).
The search will cost you time when all else must be put aside to gain Christ. Expect some people whom you encounter to be troubled about you taking your devotion to Christ too seriously; eventually we may have to continue our search alone.
All of us need to ask ourselves: "What is the ruling passion, the supreme concern of my life above all else? Am I devoted to Christ Himself? Or am I serving a cause, a movement, or institution, like the scribes?" Some have become so consecrated to a creed and so dedicated to a cause that they lose sight of the King of kings.
Unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His Name shall be called Wonderful, Counseller, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace (Is. 9:6).
Thought for Today:
They rejoiced with exceeding great joy. . . . and fell down, and worshipped Him (Matt. 2:10-11).
For Matt. 1:23: See Is. 7:14. Matt. 2:6: See Mic. 5:2. Matt. 2:15: See Hos. 11:1. Matt. 2:18: See Jer. 31:15. Matt. 3:3: See Is. 40:3.
1:18 espoused engaged; came together had physical relations, she was a virgin; 2:16 mocked of received by; coasts surrounding regions; 3:8 fruits meet for repentance a life that confirms your change of heart; 3:15 Suffer allow; fulfil all righteousness to all that God requires.
Pray for Government Official: Rep. Devin Nunes (CA) • Country: Azerbaijan (7.7 million) southern Transcaucasia between Europe and Asia • Major languages: Azeri and Russian • Religious freedom • 65% Shi'a Muslim; 30% Sunni Muslim; 2% Russian Orthodox; 2% Armenian Apostolic; 1% Jewish • Prayer Suggestion: Ask for courage to praise the Lord before unbelievers (Ps. 96:3-5).
NOTE: We list the President, Vice President, Supreme Court Justices, Cabinet Members, Senators, Representatives, and Governors on their birthdays. Because we publish in advance our list may not reflect the results of the most recent elections.
Memory Verse for the Week: