Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him. When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born. And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet, And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel. Matthew 2:1-6
Some of the most mysterious characters in the Bible are the Magi or Wise Men. Who are these guys? Where did they come from? The Magi were from Persia , which is modern day Iran. So the Magi traveled about 900 miles on camelback to find the Christ child. Now it’s obvious the Magi were familiar with many of the Messianic Prophecies of the Old Testament, including Micah 5:2 which says the Messiah will be born in Bethlehem. They were also familiar with the prophecy of Numbers 24:17 about the star as a sign of the Messiah
During their journey to Bethlehem , the Magi traveled through Jerusalem and met with King Herod, who heard about the coming of The Messiah, a King above all Kings. Herod instantly became threatened by Christ, and pretended to want to worship Jesus , however truly he just wanted to kill him. Which we will see later caused the horrific event known as “Rachel’s weeping”
The Magi were very intelligent , hence the name “Wise Man” they were known as your experts of the time, such as we look upon doctors or scholars today. The Magi were also a fulfillment of prophecy themselves as foretold by Isaiah “And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising. “ (Isaiah 60:3) “
Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, inquired of them diligently what time the star appeared. And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also. When they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was. When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy. 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. And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way Matthew 2:7-12
So how did the Magi find Jesus? They followed the star , which was prophesied in Numbers 24:17, to the town of Bethlehem prophesied by Micah 5:2. It’s often tradition in our Nativity scenes, to have 3 wise men. Well first thing is we don’t know exactly how many Magi made the trip, we assume 3 because of the gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Secondly , by the time the Magi found Jesus, it says he was a “young child”, it was most likely the Magi visited Jesus at his house and not in the manger. It could have potentially been months, maybe years until the Magi reached Bethlehem and found Jesus.
The most significant point to get from this, is that the Magi were Gentiles coming to worship the Messiah, the New Covenant has now arrived through Jesus. Salvation is now possibly, not only to the Jews but also the Gentiles who put their faith in Christ! Amen!