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Guide Us to Thy Perfect Light

By David Robinson/ January 4, 2015

Series  Advent 2014: God with Us

Context  Westminster Chapel Toronto

Topic  Person Of Christ

Scripture  Matthew 2:1-12

The Magi received the Word of God in Jerusalem, and the illumination of the star (the work of the Holy Spirit) led them to Christ.

Scripture:  Matthew 2:1-12

Sermon Notes:

  1. In his account of Jesus’ birth, Matthew recounts the coming of the Magi.
  2. The accounts of Matthew and Luke are complementary and tell the same story from different perspectives.
  3. The Magi came from the East; they are mentioned in Daniel 2, Acts 8:9 and Acts 13:8-11.
  4. The Magi were not portrayed in a positive light in scripture, being astrologers–a false religious practice–who held that the stars revealed the future.
  5. The Magi may have had access to the Jewish scriptures and they may have read Numbers 24:17.
  6. Led by the star the caravan came to Jerusalem bearing gifts and good news that the Messiah was born.
  7. Herod and all Jerusalem was troubled over the birth of a Messiah (Matt. 2:3-8), failing to realize this was fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecy (cf. Isaiah 60:1-6).
  8. The priests and scribes pointed the Magi to Christ, but they were apathetic, unwilling to visit the Christ and worship him.
  9. The Jews had God’s word and they knew it; but they refused their calling to apply it and to teach the nations by example (Deuteronomy 4:5-6).
  10. The Jews presumed they were God’s chosen people, and they presumed their status with God.
  11. The Magi received the Word of God in Jerusalem, and the illumination of the star (the work of the Holy Spirit) led them to Christ.
  12. Overjoyed, the Magi fell down and worshipped (Matt. 2:9-10), recognizing their Creator, the one who made the stars.
  13. The Magi are the firstfruits of the nations who bring their wealth as they come to worship the new king of the nations (cf. Isaiah 60).
  14. They recognized in the infant their Lord and their God, the one who had led them to this place.
  15. To truly worship, we are to give Christ the best of what we have, laying down our lives in His service.
  16. Let us begin the New Year rejoicing, knowing that Christ is the sovereign over history (cf. 1 Peter 1:8).

Application Questions:

  1. Who were the Magi and why did they seek the Christ?
  2. Why did the star direct the Magi to Jerusalem first?
  3. Why don’t the priests and scribes go with the Magi to worship the Christ?
  4. What is the significance of the gifts brought by the wise men?
  5. Are we more like the scribes and priests or the Magi, joyfully seeking to serve and worship Christ (see 2 Cor. 13:5)?
  6. In what areas do we need to repent and renew our commitment to Christ as we begin the New Year?

Sermon Notes