Second Sunday after Christmas Matthew 2:1-12 January 3, 2021

The Gospel of Matthew 2:1-12

In the time of King Herod, after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, asking, “Where is the child who has been born king of the Jews? For we observed his star at its rising, and have come to pay him homage.” When King Herod heard this, he was frightened, and all Jerusalem with him; and calling together all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Messiah was to be born. They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea; for so it has been written by the prophet: `And you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler who is to shepherd my people Israel.'”

Then Herod secretly called for the wise men and learned from them the exact time when the star had appeared. Then he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child; and when you have found him, bring me word so that I may also go and pay him homage.” When they had heard the king, they set out; and there, ahead of them, went the star that they had seen at its rising, until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw that the star had stopped, they were overwhelmed with joy. On entering the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother; and they knelt down and paid him homage. Then, opening their treasure chests, they offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they left for their own country by another road

Let us Pray: Heavenly Father, you sent your son to guide your people, just as you sent a star to guide the Wise Men to worship him. We pray that you will send, your Holy Spirit to guide our Church as we begin a New Year.  We know that this coming year will bring significant changes and we pray that you will always be present as we take one more step along the journey of faith.

The story of the wise men is filled with mystery and wonder. And just as interpretations of the wise men developed over time based on what was going on in the world, so too will what’s going on today affect how people find meaning in the Bible to make sense of their lives.  The Wise Men followed a Star that guided them to Christ. This year we had a Christmas star that brought hope and joy into the world. A time when we needed a guiding light. A star to give us direction to bring us to our Lord and Savior. The year we have left behind gave us many challenges, many were filled with grief, but many also were filled with joy. We found many new ways to do things, we found a peaceful existence that was not necessarily bad, we found that we can exists as a community without being in a building, we found ways to help each other, we found that if we believe, God will be there for us. So if we look back on 2020 was it really all that bad? The three wise men faced their own challenges from Herod and they followed the word of God and safely returned home. We can to if we follow the word be safe and return home. It is always rewarding to see how we can interpret our own lives and purposes from the ancient texts of the bible. It’s important to remember and recognize that we’re reimagining our lives from the written words, and these words themselves are interpretations.” So as the Christmas star shown bright this year let us shine bright as we follow the path of the wise men to that wonderful place and find the baby Jesus waiting for us. May you walk with the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

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