January 7, 2018
The Epiphany of the Lord
IS 60:1-6 PS 72:1-2, 7-8, 10-11, 12-13 EPH 3:2-3, 5-6 MT 2: 1-12
“Rise up in splendor, Jerusalem, the glory of the Lord shines upon you, your light has come!” The prophetic voice of several thousand years ago calls out to us today. Once again, darkness covers the Earth and shadows cover us, but then Christmas comes to remind us that unto us a Son is born a savior has been given. God calls us forth using these ancient words enjoining us to be a light to the nations.
Generations before the birth of Jesus, the prophet foretold the visit of the Magi bringing their gifts of frankincense and myrrh from far off lands. Isaiah saw that these visitors would bring the signs of anointing and kingship as well as those of anointing and the grave. They came together, the majesty and the grave.
In Christ, we have not only majesty and the grave, but also the prophecy and its fulfillment. While the Jewish people waited for the majesty of a great king, they missed the promise of the grave and its ultimate redemption of us all. They waited eagerly for Christmas, but Christmas would have been meaningless without Good Friday and Easter Sunday.
That’s what the Magi brought when they came in search of the newborn King of the Jews, they brought the gold and frankincense to anoint and crown Him, and the myrrh to anoint and bury him. They brought with them Christmas and Good Friday, the rejoicing and the sacrifice, life and death.