A secret is not a real mystery, because secrets are usually shared, eventually. Mysteries cannot be displayed or understood in their totality. God is a mystery, which is too much for the limited space on our human hard-drives. As has been said, the whole ocean cannot be put into a single bucket. Parts of this mystery is how this mysterious God, Who is Love, loves the entire human race beginning with little Israel and focused on a very small stable where a Light has been lit for all nations.
‘’Where is he who has been born king of the Jews?”
Have you attended the Grammy awards and on getting there met no one on the Red carpet? Or meet an empty stadium on a Champion’s league final match? Guess you will definitely feel disillusioned and surprised. Surely, you will feel bad and empty. The wise men felt emptier, alone and out of place than you will feel in these situations.
Reading through Matthew’s account of the visit of the wise men; I got struck with the opening verse, particularly with the question posed by the wise men ‘’Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? This question seem natural especially as coming from individuals who were seeking answers? For they had to ask so as to receive answers. The wise men question transcends what a regular question entails, thus they got the wrong answer.
It was a question filled with bewilderment, rapped with amazement and intended to fill in the gap that the “blinded” Jews could not notice. It was that which begs the sensitivity of the Jews, question their upmost sheer ignorance and tries to contain the feeling of wanting the wise men felt.
What the wise men encountered beat their imagination, it was like a scene from an old blurry movie that requires enlightenment. They just could not comprehend the play of events, because the scenes were quite out of line, not in consonance with the expected script. Where is he who has been born king of the Jews, they chorused. A new star appeared. For the stargazers, this event had a meaning that sent them on their journey. They expected to find something wonderful
It is like running to St Peter Basilica on the announcement of a new pope, so as to see him on the balcony, only to get there and meet a handful of people attending to their own preoccupation. Silence will not be the best disposition here, but a question that begs to bring the people around to the reality of the moment: where is the Pope giving his opening and acceptance address you will definitely almost shout out.
The question here arise not only for an answer or clarification, but the envisaged reception and disposition of people at the announcement of a new pope. One would naturally have envisaged to meet a crowd at St Peter’s Basilica. So too, the birth of the messiah whose star and birth was spoken of and made visible to all through signs and events would have drawn the host of nations and celebration, particularly in his birth nation. The wise men expected a glorious and festive atmosphere as different from what they met. The Magi pay attention to the stars and when they see something special, they sense there is meaning in that event. Too often we aren't that open to see a new light, a new message, a clear call, to pay attention.
The birth of the new born king should have heralded joyous shouts of rejoicing and celebration throughout Israel and more particularly in the king’s palace. The wise men just had to ask; where is he who has been born king of the Jews? Why is there no celebration, where are the musicians and the harpists, where are the heralds of the good news, the “evangelion”? Where is the feast prepared, where are the banquet tables, where are the invited guests and dignitaries, where is he whose birth should envelop the nation in total rejoicing?
It is easy to fault and condemn the Jews, however, their story is our story too. And I ask; where are the signs that should accompany our celebration of the birth of Christ at Christmas? Our proclamation of the birth of Christ should usher in the corresponding signs of our belief and faith of his presence among us as our Lord, King and Redeemer. The Christmas season should blossom with faith, with the joy of the Lord. The unfathomable love of God that is expressed by Christ’s birth should flow into our lives, homes, businesses, relationships, and most especially our relationship with God. It should be seen in our every action, radiate everywhere we go and dwell richly in us.
Mercy, grace, peace, charity and hope are the signs that should accompany the Christmas season. Let us not like the Jews give way to questions that begs the reason of the season. It will be shameful when ask: “where is the effect of Christ’s birth in us; is he really born to us, in us, and for us with our negative attitudes and dispositions.” Let others not pass us by in their search for the new born king.
The Fumata Bianca, the white smoke from the roof of the Sistine chapel draws everyone to St Peter’s square signifying the election of a new Pope. The star which is the sign of the birth of the infant king drew the wise men to the land of Israel. What is the Christmas sign today, or what are the signs? The season of Advent, the admonitions, the readings, the Christmas atmosphere are all today’s visible signs and they draw a lot of people to truly follow the star’s lead to a profound encounter with Jesus. Our lives therefore should be filled with true love and give love back in return by responding generously to everyone and to every facet of our lives this Christmas, so as to encourage all who come to experience Christ with us, and in us, and through us.
- For God So Loved The World. Light and Darkness, Mutu...
He didn’t give this incredible gift of His son to judge and condemn our sin and chaos, but to love and restore. It’s actually a pretty simple plan; we believe in him and are acquitted or not believe and remain condemned (mutually exclusive states).