I don’t think anything compares to watching my nieces and nephew open presents. The looks of surprise, excitement, and on occasion, disappointment are indescribable. Christmas is a time of giving and receiving. But I’m sure you can guess the direction this post is headed. The greatest gift isn’t found under the tree or in a stocking but the manger over two-thousand years ago.
One of the most significant prophetic signs in the Christmas story is the wise men’s visit. These men were Gentiles, a sign of God’s plan to graft us into Israel.
Matthew 2:10-12 ESV “When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. 11 And going into the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. 12 And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.”
Think about the gifts presented to a child; gold, frankincense, and myrrh. These were significant gifts; I’m sure Mary and Joseph were astounded at such a display and worship towards their son. The wise men recognized something the leaders of Israel never recognized during Jesus’s public ministry, that He was the Lamb of God, sent to atone for the world’s sins.
As lavish as the gifts were, they are nothing compared to the sacrifice of the Son of God putting on flesh, fulfilling all righteousness, and taking the punishment for our sins.
“The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.”John 1:9-14 ESV
As you open gifts next weekend, take a moment and even moments to reflect on the greatest gift ever given to us, Jesus Christ, the Son of God.