Ginrich's Devotional Blog

December 13, 2012

Herod

Filed under: Advent,Bible,Christ,devotion,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Matthew 2:15  He stayed there until Herod died. In this way what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet was fulfilled: “ I called my Son out of Egypt.” 

Here is yet another old prophecy fulfilled, “I called my Son out of Egypt.”  Several things had to occur for this to happen.  The wise men had to be warned by God to go home a different way to avoid Herod.  Joseph had to be warned to flee.  Not only did Joseph have to be warned, he had to obey right away.  Once again Joseph listened to his dream and responded.  He got up, packed the gifts from the wise men and took Mary and the baby Jesus in the dark of the night and went to Egypt.  He stayed there until  God told Him all was safe.  We don’t understand why God allowed all those babies to be killed.  From our perspective it seems really cruel.  From our perspective we can’t see what those babies would face had they continued on this earth.  Our vision is very one-sided.  Our question is do we choose to trust God in and through all things even when we don’t understand?  It wasn’t the first time in history babies were slain.  Moses was born during a time as that.  God protected Moses and used him to bring the Hebrews out of slavery in Egypt.  Now God is using Egypt to protect His Son.  Man does very cruel things to man.  God does not cause man to do those things but God does protect the ones He chooses to work through.  They also have to be wanting to walk in obedience to Him.  God wants to work through each of us.  Are we willing to respond in total obedience? Are we willing to go into action as soon as we see the need?  It may not be something big like leading a multitude out of slavery.  It may be just as simple as helping just one person.  it will require a willingness to hear God, see the task and obey through action.  Let us be like the wise men and like Joseph and listen and respond.  

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December 12, 2012

Gifts of Wise Men

Filed under: Advent,Bible,Christ,Christian,devotion,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Matthew 2:1-2 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, in the time of King Herod, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem  saying, “Where is the one who is born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”

The Christ was first sought by shepherds, thought to be the lower class and very intelligent.  Now there are wise men from the  East seeking to worship the new-born King.  No where does it say how many wise men came.  It only says they brought three types of gifts: gold, frankincense and myrrh.  All 3 very expensive and highly treasured commodities.  These wise men studied the heavens and knew how to read the stars.  They also knew that there was a long-awaited King to be born in Judea.  It was natural for them to go to Jerusalem to see the reigning King and ask where their prophesied King would be born.  When they were told He would be born in Bethlehem so they continued on in their journey.  This journey took them about 2 years.  When they found the Christ they gave their gifts and worshiped Him.  These wise men also had a dream  In their dream they were told Harrod would seek to kill the new-born King.  They made hast to depart in a way that kept them out of Jerusalem.  Their trip to find the new-born King was not an easy trip.  Yet they didn’t give up.  They were determined to take as long as needed, search as hard as needed to find this King and give Him their gifts.  Our question is do we search until we find Him?  Do we take however long is needed to really find Him?  What gifts do we bring to our King?  The girt He desires more than anything is the gift of our hearts, our love for Him and for all His creation – fellow mankind.  Material things we buy for others cannot substitute for the gift of love.  Let us be sure to first and foremost give the gift of love, His love, to those around us.   

December 14, 2010

The Wise Men

Mat 2:1 Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,

Notice these visitors are called “wise men” not “kings.”  Notice also no number is given.  We tend to romanticize history and change the facts.  Wise men of the time were astronomers  They spent their time studying the stars and planets.  They were very familiar with all the stars visible and also learned in the prophecies of Isaiah and Daniel concerning the coming of the Messiah.  So, when they star the new star, the knew where to go.  The prophecies pointed to Bethlehem.  They had to travel past Herod’s palace and were called before Herod.  Notice also, when you read the entire verses in Matthew, they actually found Jesus in a house, not a manger.  By the time the astronomers got there Joseph and Mary were in a house in Bethlehem.

Once again we have wise, learned men listing to their dreams.  They were told in their dream not to return through Herod’s city but to go another way.  I’m not sure why Herod didn’t seek them out; maybe they were already out of range.  Instead, Herod fulfilled another prophecy by having all boy babies 2 years old and under killed.

It is so important for us to be familiar with the entire Bible.  So many Christians think the Old Testament is no longer important.  It is through the combination of the Old and New Testament that God speaks to us.  There are a lot of Bible reading plans available to help us read all sections of the Bible.  Look one up that most appeals to you.  Just be sure it is well balanced between the books of the prophets, the psalms and proverbs, the gospels and the letters.  All of them tie together.

 

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