Matthew 2:11 (NIV)

11 On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. 

This verse which is found in the Gospel of Matthew relates to the visit of the 3 wise men to the baby Jesus. Who may have actually been around 2-3 years old and not a baby this was due to the distance that the Wise Magi had traveled from the east. There were no highways, no 4×4 vehicles and no planes, so their single speed camel or horse was all they had to reach the destination of Bethlehem.

The wise men were astronomers and related the star that they had followed to the child that Mary was looking after. Matthew 2:2 (NIV)“Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”

So that was there purpose to follow Jesus’ star and to worship him. So when they entered the house they knew the significance of Jesus and bowed down to worship and adore him. I love this Christmas song.

O come let us adore Him
O come let us adore Him
O come let us adore Him
Christ the Lord

Everything the wise men had done up to that point had been significant. They understood the significance of the star and followed it. They understood the significance of who Jesus was and who he was destined to become.

Did they just bring some fancy, nice gifts for Jesus?

After all it was Christmas……

They opened up their treasure chests and gave Jesus the most expensive, meaningful gifts they had.

I feel that as an act of worship God calls us to do the same. To bow the knee in worship, open up the treasures of our hearts and offer up something of worth, something that will bless his Holy Name.

Gold was offered as an expensive rare metal which is also significant as it represents royalty. By giving it to the young Jesus they were really saying that they regarded him as a king and this is most definitely what they thought (see verse 2 “born king of the Jews?”)

Frankincense had healing properties and signified Jesus as a priest. They regarded Jesus in a priestly manner and looked past his circumstance of being a son of a carpenter and looked towards his heavenly destiny.

Myrr was almost the most significant gift as it was often used during crucifixion and burial which points to the long term future that was ahead of Jesus. However the Old Testament refers to Myrr in terms of Joy and festivity.

So the gifts given were almost a prophetic statement of who Jesus was and who he was destined to become.

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