Wednesday, January 2, 2019
Matthew 2:1-2: Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the King, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, "Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we saw His star when it rose and have come to worship Him."
The Season of Christmas:
The Season of Christmas is the shortest season in the Church calendar. It is only 12 days long. After Christmas is the season of Epiphany, which is also called, "The Season of Light," specifically the light of Jesus. The thirteenth day after Christmas is this coming Sunday.
Why the calendar lesson? It ties to our reading today. It is the day that we celebrate the arrival of the "Wise Men," or "The "Magi," to the house of Joseph, Mary, and the toddler Jesus. The Wise Men didn't arrive on the day of Jesus' birth.
The Reason They Came:
The Wise Men wherever they lived, saw a brand new star appear in the western sky. It was never seen before. They knew the night sky well enough to know this was not ordinary. I am sure that it was, "a curiosity" at least. Whatever research they did to attempt to discover the meaning of its' appearance, they left their home and went in the direction it took them. They saw the light.
There was something about this star that lead them to conclude to follow it. I believe that it was in the answer they gave to Herod. "We have come to worship the new born King of the Jews." They saw Jesus' external light and they wanted to be in His internal light. The star was the guide to lead them to Jesus.
The Reason We Come:
We come to Jesus because we see the light of Him who saved us and gave us life. We believe in Him who is the light and life that shines in our dark lives.
Why are we in darkness? Sin and sinful acts keeps us in darkness. When we believe in Jesus and see His light, we are cleansed from all sin and God the Father declares us clean and righteous.
And how did God lead you to the light? Through what or whom did you see the light? For me, it was my parents. They raised me in the presence of God and God's people. Through them I came to faith and received the light of the Gospel of Jesus. God used them to bring me to where I saw the light.
We Lead Others:
Because of faith, we are light bearers. We are the star to people we know. We are the light bearers. We shine the light of Jesus day and night. We never do it perfectly. We still have sin lingering in our lives. Our light is sometimes fuzzy and not as bright as we think it should be. People see the light through frail and weak sinners.
So what is the light we shine? Simple. It's forgiveness. The light of Jesus is the forgiveness of sins that He freely gave through the sacrifice of His life. Jesus forgave us our sins because God loves us so much. Perfection is NOT the light. FORGIVENESS OF SINS IS. When we live as forgiven sinners, we show Jesus' light. When we live forgiveness, being forgiven and forgiving others, we shine Jesus.
Shine the light of forgiveness. Shine Jesus.
Pastor Robert Hemsath joined Faith Lutheran Church and School as the Senior Pastor in January 2017. Pastor Hemsath comes to FLC from Christ the King Lutheran Church in Waxahachie, TX. He has also served congregations in Aberdeen, ID and Pocatello, ID. He has been a Lutheran pastor for the past 20 years.