Matthew 2:1-12 NLT
Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the reign of King Herod. About that time some wise men from eastern lands arrived in Jerusalem, asking, “Where is the newborn king of the Jews? We saw his star as it rose, and we have come to worship him.” King Herod was deeply disturbed when he heard this, as was everyone in Jerusalem. He called a meeting of the leading priests and teachers of religious law and asked, “Where is the Messiah supposed to be born?” “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they said, “for this is what the prophet wrote:
‘And you, O Bethlehem in the land of Judah, are not least among the ruling cities of Judah, for a ruler will come from you who will be the shepherd for my people Israel.’ ”
Then Herod called for a private meeting with the wise men, and he learned from them the time when the star first appeared. Then he told them, “Go to Bethlehem and search carefully for the child. And when you find him, come back and tell me so that I can go and worship him, too!” After this interview the wise men went their way.
And the star they had seen in the east guided them to Bethlehem. It went ahead of them and stopped over the place where the child was.
When they saw the star, they were filled with joy!
They entered the house and saw the child with his mother, Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasure chests and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
When it was time to leave, they returned to their own country by another route, for God had warned them in a dream not to return to Herod.
January 6 is known as Epiphany or in many places as King’s Day. It’s the celebration of the magi visiting Jesus to present their gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.
Their gifts may not have seemed all that fitting for a baby, but they were more than adequate for King Jesus, and historically appropriate in honour of a King. Gold as a precious metal would have been needed for the family with so much expense traveling, setting up home and living. Frankincense as a perfume or incense used in the Temple and religious rituals. Myrrh as an anointing oil and healing balm which not only symbolizes Jesus ministry as the Healer, but could have been used in any situation requiring anointing including His burial.
So, what can we bring Jesus today? The Bible talks a lot about giving ourselves to the purposes of God, being on mission for Him and serving Him. The greatest gift we can give in response to Jesus gift of Himself is to give Him our hearts, the deepest part of our lives where our wants and desires are held.
Let’s ponder the words from the old hymn “What can I give Him?”
What can I give Him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
If I were a wise man, I would do my part;
Yet what can I give Him?
Give Him my heart.