Friday, January 05, 2007

The Feast of the Epiphany

This Sunday marks the Feast of the Epiphany. Epiphany means manifestation. Thus we celebrate Christ's manifestation on Sunday. Traditionally, the Epiphany celebrates the visit of the Magi, the baptism in the Jordan, and Christ's changing the water to wine at the Wedding in Cana.

1 When Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, in the days of King Herod, behold, magi from the east arrived in Jerusalem,
saying, "Where is the newborn king of the Jews? We saw his star at its rising and have come to do him homage."
When King Herod heard this, he was greatly troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.
Assembling all the chief priests and the scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Messiah was to be born.
They said to him, "In Bethlehem of Judea, for thus it has been written through the prophet:
'And you, Bethlehem, land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; since from you shall come a ruler, who is to shepherd my people Israel.'"
Then Herod called the magi secretly and ascertained from them the time of the star's appearance.
He sent them to Bethlehem and said, "Go and search diligently for the child. When you have found him, bring me word, that I too may go and do him homage."
After their audience with the king they set out. And behold, the star that they had seen at its rising preceded them, until it came and stopped over the place where the child was.
They were overjoyed at seeing the star,
and on entering the house they saw the child with Mary his mother. They prostrated themselves and did him homage. Then they opened their treasures and offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed for their country by another way.
Matthew 2:1-12

Imagine how different the world would be if the Magi had returned to Herod. Jesus might have been slaughtered as were the many innocents murdered by Herod when he realized he had been decieved by the Magi. (Matthew 2:16-18)
I am grateful to you for the gift of your son. He came humbly into this world to be a light for all whether poor or rich. He did not care what "station" you held in society as long as you lived as He taught. His life began with difficulty and in exile. Help me to learn from His example of humility. Remind me that life is to be lived as He lived, and not a race to see who has the most "stuff" at the end. Remind me that He who has Christ in him has riches beyond compare.

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