Today is the Feast of the Epiphany. The church’s celebration of the coming of the Wise men, Gentiles from the East, to worship the Christ child. Epiphany shows us that Jesus Christ is the true light of the world, the Saviour of the nations, and the Lord of Jew and Gentile alike. Epiphany reminds us Christians that we too, are to shine forth as a reflection of Christ’s light.
Often overlooked in all this talk of Wise Men and Stars, is the detour they took into Jerusalem. These magi from the East, got lost for a time. They needed something more than the miraculous star to see them to the Christ Child. CFW Walther speaks powerfully of the importance of this fact when he said:
Even more wonderful than the circumstances of this account is the fact that God chose to lead the Wise Men to Bethlehem, not exclusively by the star, but also via a detour. The Jewish king, with his chief priests and scribes, first had to show them from God’s Word that Bethlehem was the place where Christ could be found. We cannot imagine that the all-wise God would have done this without a most important reason. God wanted to show all future generations that He did not lead the Gentiles to His dear Son by miracles, by stars, by angels, or by some other extraordinary heavenly appearance. Instead, He directed them by means of men, His already existing church. We see from this that the mission to the Gentiles is a duty of the Church … The Christian Church is a debtor to the whole world that remains outside Christ. The are responsible for the lighting of the heavenly star of the Word for the poor Gentiles and leading them to Bethlehem.
As I begin a New Year this will be my humble resolution. That I, through this blog, may continue in my own little way to be just such a detour. For two and a half years I have been trying to light the heavenly star of the Word that would direct people to Jesus. Sometimes by reflection, sometimes in poetry or story, sometimes by asking questions that others may not want asked … I do it not to tell you more about me (there’s really not that much of interest to be said) but to point you onward to Christ.
So look onward and upward – to the Babe in Bethlehem, the Teacher and Miracle Worker in Galilee, the Suffering Servant upon the Cross, the Saviour emerging from the opened tomb, the King of Kings who sits at the right hand of the Father. Here is the true light of the world! The light no amount of darkness can overcome!
And as long as my own little light continues to show you (however imperfectly) that great and glorious light, I am doing all that I hoped for in this little exercise. Sometimes the batteries will run low, sometimes the light will unfocused, but my prayer is that however weak it may be, this little light of mine will continue to lead you back to that which all truly wise men (and women) seek .