Herod the Great as he was called was just one of a long line of Herods who lived totally out of control lives that included being suspicious of, and killing off their own children and wives if they felt justified by their fears. Herod was the "king" of the Jews set on the throne by Rome, but he was not the rightful holder of the Jewish throne and he knew it. He was an Idumaean, a decedent of Esau.(remember Esau Gen.25:21-34).
So when the magi appeared saying they were there to worship the new born ,rightful Jewish king, of course Herod acted in a way that would protect his kingdom. He was prompted by the devil himself of course, but one thing that is very interesting about this story is that even Satan did not know which baby was the messiah. We should never forget that Satan is a created being who does not know everything and can't be everywhere at once. He is not a God, just a fallen angel.
The Jewish historian Josephus, goes into great detail about the family of Herod. There were a great deal of them, all related to each other. The information is mind boggling and very confusing but also very interesting. I could go on, but enough about Herod.
Ok, so back to the Magi. According to Ungers bible Dictionary, The term Magi was used as the name for, priests, wisemen, scientists and astrologers among the Medes, Persians, and Babylonians. I don't want to go into too much detail, but if you have read the book of Daniel you will see the connection here. In Daniel 5:11 we see that Daniel had been put in charge of all the magi. So it is safe to assume that the Magi who came from the east were originally introduced to the prophecies of the Jewish messiah by Daniel.
There is one very interesting prophecy about a star in Num. 24:17
Moving on, all of you probably know this but , the Magi were probably accompanied by a very large procession of animals , servants and who knows what else. If they were just 3 richly dressed guys carrying large amount of gold and other riches, they probably wouldn't have made it safely to Jesus. Also, they were impressive enough when they rolled into town to get an audience with the king. So, they probably were nothing like the guys we put out with our nativity sets. Also, because of when they told Herod they first saw the star he decided that Jesus could have been born anytime within the past 2 years. We are told in Matthew 2:11, that they "came into the house" where the family was living. No more manger. So Jesus could have been 2 years old by then. Which brings us to how we are going to remember what is in Matthew chapter 2.
To Remember MATTHEW CHAPTER 2
We are going to say
JESUS TURNS 2
THE WISE MEN COME and
HEROD SLAUGHTERS THE 2 YEAR OLDS
MATTHEW CHAPTER 1******
FIRST 17 VERSES ARE GENEALOGY
VERSE 18 (swaddled baby) starts the Christmas story
(ONE) ONLY BEGOTTEN SON
MATTHEW CHAPTER 2 ********
JESUS TURN 2
THE WISE MEN COME
HEROD SLAUGHTERS THE 2 YEAR OLDS
Time to start reading chapter 3 !!! Read it everyday if you can. I won't be able to post again for 2 weeks. After that we should be on to an every week schedule.
God Bless you ladies, you are all in my prayers! Don't forget to practice as you go to sleep at night.
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