He Will Shepherd My People
We often use the phrase “the stars were aligned” to describe a situation in which a number of disparate factors all line up for our good. As we read through the various announcements of Jesus’ birth, we begin to get the same feeling. The stars were aligned—literally in the case of the announcement to the magi. It was a star that made the announcement to them, letting them know in a supernatural way that the king of the Jews had been born. What’s unique about the magi is that they were Gentiles! And here we see the evidence that God is fulfilling the promise He made so long ago to Abraham (Genesis 12:1–5). The King of the Jews had indeed come to shepherd His people, Israel, but He had also come to save the whole world.
After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”
When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him. When he had called together all the people’s chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Messiah was to be born. “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they replied, “for this is what the prophet has written:
“ ‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for out of you will come a ruler
who will shepherd my people Israel.’ ”
Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him.”
After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen when it rose went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were overjoyed.
- Why do you think the magi were drawn to find the King of the Jews and worship Him?
- Why do you think King Herod was disturbed by the news of the birth of the possible Messiah?
- Reflect on the amount of joy you have in your life right now. What are the relationships, activities, and practices that foster that joy? What diminishes your joy?
- What does worship of God look like in your life? What might worship look like in this Christmas season?
God, thank You for the amazing, miraculous good news of Jesus, and that through Him, You have made a way for all people to be with You. Remind me of the joy that is mine in and through You, especially in a season that can not only be busy, but also difficult. Grant me a heart of worship and eyes that are open to see and experience Your great, saving, healing power. Amen.
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