“I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not near.
A star will come out of Jacob; a sceptre will rise out of Israel.”
“We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”
Matthew 2:2 (NIVUK)
In his testimony a Christian explained how he had found Jesus after looking for meaning in his life. We can understand what he meant, and perhaps we can relate it to the experience of the wise men who found the child Jesus, after their long, arduous trip, probably on camels, some say possibly from ancient Parthia.
It’s interesting to note the progress of the wise men. They had a question about a star they observed in the sky, and wondered what significance it had. Surely, they thought, it must mean the birth of a king. When they get to Judaea the clue concerning the location of this king’s birth is found by turning to the scriptures. Then they go to the house in Bethlehem, over which the star is now shining, and there they find Jesus. So the scriptures point them to Jesus. The wise men go from questions about the world around them to the Bible, which then directs them to Jesus: some would say that is the Christian journey, that’s how you find God.
It sounds reasonable enough, but it misses one essential point: God sent the star first. It was through an act of God that the wise men had questions in the first place. Their spiritual awakening was from God, not from within themselves or from their own culture. God drew them to Jesus. Jesus was later to say, ‘No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them” (John 6:44).
The spiritual reality is that we are found in Jesus, not that we find him. God brings us by what’s happening in our life, through the scriptures, to his Son, Jesus Christ. This is what the wise men found out.
The Christian journey is that we come to Jesus, not because we have sought him out, but because the Father draws us to him.
Thank you, Father, for guiding us to your Son, Jesus. In His name.
Study by James Henderson
About the Author:
James Henderson is the National Ministry Leader for Grace Communion International in the UK and Ireland. This weekend James is speaking in our Great Baddow church. You are welcome to attend any of our local congregations. For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.wcg.org.uk under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.