TEXT: Matthew 2:10-12:
10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.
11 And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense and myrrh.
12 And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way.
After preaching the Gospel every day for 367 days straight throughout the 2016 presidential campaign season, I am preaching the Gospel every day throughout the first 100 days of President Donald Trump’s term. If you think a new president being in office is the only thing needed to save America and ‘make America great again’, you are woefully deceived. The church must follow through and “keep the main thing the main thing: and that is reaching unbelievers with the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and praying for their salvation, for the problem in America is not only disobedient presidents, politicians, and people, but disobedient pastors, preachers, and parishioners who have refused to obey the Lord’s Great Commission which is to, ‘Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature,’ and who have refused to obey God’s repeated commands to ‘pray without ceasing’ for unbelievers, believers, and political leaders.” So, we encourage you to pray for the new president, but not to get caught up in the political happenings like the world does. Nothing much is going to change until people get saved and get their hearts right with the Lord. And that is what this campaign is all about.
This campaign is inspired by the following three verses: 1 Corinthians 2:2 which says, “For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.” Acts 5:42 which says, “And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.” And 2 Timothy 2:4 which says, “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.”
This series is not for Christians necessarily. However, I do hope you are one of those saints who still loves to hear the “Old, old story of Jesus and His love” — As another hymn says, “For those who know it best Seem hungering and thirsting to hear it like the rest.” This series is primarily for unbelievers, so they can hear and understand the Gospel and be saved from sin and the punishment of sin which is hell. This is message number 38, day 405 since Jan. 1, 2016.
N.T. Wright said, “The longer you look at Jesus, the more you will want to serve him in his world.”
When the wise men realized that they had reached their destination, signified by the star ceasing to move before them, they “rejoiced with exceeding great joy.” They proceeded to enter the house where Mary and Joseph lived where they came face-to-face with the Son of God, who was, at this time, about one year old. Many have wondered what the Child Jesus must have been like. Not too long after Jesus’ death, burial, resurrection, and ascension, writers began to make up fictional stories of Jesus working miracles as a child. In recent years, one author has written a series of novels about the boy Jesus which are now being made into a movie. But the Bible does not give us many details about Jesus appearance or actions until His ministry begins around the age of thirty.
However, judging by the reaction of the wise men when they meet the Child Jesus, we can determine that there was something different about Him even as an infant, something divine, something that set Him apart. Even in the eyes of these pagans, Jesus was worthy of worship. We see this kind of reaction in all of the Scriptural accounts of Jesus’ childhood. Mary and Joseph never had to introduce Jesus. They never said, “Look, this is God’s Son. This is the Messiah.” The shepherds who went to Bethlehem looked on an infant fresh from the womb and rejoiced because they knew it was the Messiah. When Mary and Joseph took Jesus to the Temple a few days later, both Simeon and Anna immediately recognized the divinity of the Baby. When Jesus was twelve years old, the chief priests and scribes in the Temple marveled over the fact that Jesus was answering their questions with unfathomable wisdom.
So, something about Jesus, even as a Child, prompted people to recognize that He was special. The Bible tells us that the wise men did three things when they met Jesus. First, they “fell down” or bowed down to Him. Can you imagine bowing down to a child? Probably not. But, when the wise men bowed down, they were demonstrating that, though Jesus appeared as a child, they knew that He held more power and authority than they did. They had the spirit of John the Baptist who said, “He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before me.”
Then, the wise men “worshiped” Jesus. Throughout the Bible, it is clearly stated that worship was to be given to God alone. When men began to worship angels, the angels always corrected them and said, ‘Don’t worship us; worship God.’ When some pagans tried to worship Paul and Silas, the apostles rebuked them and said, ‘Worship belongs to God alone.’ In Scripture, Jesus Christ is the only man who ever accepted worship from others. He accepted that worship because He is God. The wise men recognized that Jesus was not just the firstborn son of a royal human family, but the firstborn Son of God, and thus deserving of worship.
Finally, the wise men gave “gifts” to the Child Jesus. They gave precious, expensive gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Gold was a symbol of wealth, and gold today is still the standard of money in most countries. The gold could be said to represent Jesus’ ownership of all the wealth of the world. Frankincense is a type of perfume or incense made from the frankincense tree. In the Old Testament, the Jews burned incense in the Temple as a “sweet” smell that rose up before God. The smell of the incense was pleasing to God and the presentation of incense was symbolic of the pleasing sacrifice that Jesus’ death would be for mankind. Myrrh is a bitter gum or perfume that comes from certain plants in Arabia and Ethiopia. It was used in the embalming of the dead before burial. This gift portended the death and burial of Christ. The wise men recognized that all that they had rightfully belonged to the newborn King. And they were willing to give up what they “owned” for Him. We do not know if the wise men were considered “saved” at this moment, but we do know that they exhibited the spirit of saved people. Later in His ministry, Jesus would test people’s willingness to give up their possessions as a means of demonstrating who was ready to be a true disciple and who was not. Sadly, many who knew the full grown man Jesus, with all of His miraculous works, were not willing to give up their money, their possessions, or their family ties in order to follow Christ.
This is the Child the wise men met in Bethlehem — a Child worthy of honor, worship, and adoration. William C. Dix summed it up well in his classic hymn:
What child is this, who, laid to rest,
On Mary’s lap is sleeping?
Whom angels greet with anthems sweet,
While shepherds watch are keeping?
Nails, spears shall pierce him through,
the cross he bore for me, for you.
Hail, hail the Word made flesh,
the Babe, the Son of Mary.
So bring him incense, gold, and myrrh,
Peasant and king come to own him.
The King of kings salvation brings,
Let loving hearts enthrone him.
Jesus does not appear as an infant to us today, but has revealed Himself fully in the pages of Scripture. Our reaction should be to bow down before Him, recognizing Him as greater than ourselves; to worship Him, recognizing Him as God; and to be willing to give up that which is most valuable to us in order to follow Him. Are you ready to enthrone the King of Kings in your heart and embrace the salvation he brings? Here is how you can do that today:
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to GospelLightSociety.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.