Matt 2:1-10 Wisemen CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
It is interesting that there were wise men in the east that saw a star and followed it to the King of the Jews. Why men from the east? How did they know to look for the star? What kind of star could it have been that went before them and stood over the place where Jesus was? And what was so special about Bethlehem? All of these questions are answered in this lesson.
Men From The East
In Is. 60:1-10, we read that at the coming of Jesus Christ, the Gentiles would “come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising,” (Is. 60:2). Of course, now we know that this passage is doctrinally a reference to the second coming of Jesus. However, at the time of his birth, the coming of the wise men partially fulfilled this prophecy.
600 years before the birth of Jesus, Judahhad been taken captive by Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon. Babylonwas east of Israel. There Daniel was trained in the wisdom, knowledge, science and language of the Chaldeans. Because of his interpretations of dreams, Daniel was promoted in the kingdom of Babylon and later in the kingdom of the Medes and Persians.
While ruling, Daniel received a prophecy concerning the coming of the Messiah, his death and some of the events of the Tribulation. This prophecy, recorded in Dan. 9:23-27, was likely used by the wise men of the east to determine the approximate time of the birth of Jesus, the King of the Jews.
These wise men would not only have been interested in this prophecy but they would have also studied the stars. According to Dan. 2:2, king Nebuchadnezzar was advised by astrologers.
And since they would have been looking in the “heavens” for a sign foretelling the birth of the king, God sent them a star (Num. 24:17) to guide them.
The Star that led the wise men to Jesus was not an ordinary star. It was an angel. It went before them to guide them and it stopped when it arrived at the place where Jesus was. An ordinary star would not have traveled like that. In Rev. 1:16, we see Jesus with seven stars in his right hand. And in Rev. 1:20, we find that the seven stars are seven angels. Furthermore, in Rev. 22:16, we find that Jesus himself is the bright and morning star.
The Star referred to in the prophecy of Num. 24:17 is connected with a king, since the verse says, “a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel.” So, these wise men that followed the star would have been looking for a king.
It is significant that Jesus was born in Bethlehem, because the prophecy concerning the place of his birth indicated that he would be born a ruler. In Mic. 5:2, the Bible says, “But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.”
Even in the end of Jesus’ earthly ministry, when he was on trial before Pilate, Jesus testified that he was born a king (Jn 18:37). So, these wise men were, in fact, very wise. And when
they saw the star and later the King, himself, “they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.” There reaction was not unlike ours when we finally found the King of the Jews. Praise God!