Don’t be alarmed. This Sunday we are talking about the wise men…and it is not Christmas. I hope that doesn’t disorient anyone too badly.
Chapter 1 of Matthew introduces us to the main characters of the story of the world: God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The Father is overseeing history to bring about His plans, the Son has come to save his people, and the Spirit is the active agent that brings the life of the Son into the world.
Chapter 1 tells us who the story is about. Now in Chapter 2, Matthew introduces us to the two primary ways we can know about God. If life is about knowing God, then how are we to know Him? He can only be known through revelation, and he has given us two primary forms of revelation: natural revelation and special revelation.
The story about the wise men is not really about Christmas. It is a story about the world and the Word, about the two books that God has graciously given us to encounter him.
But…there is a problem with each. The wise men have the desire to find Christ but not the direction. The scribes and Pharisees have the answers but not the affection.
We need both.
The desire and direction.
The answers and affection.
And God’s two books — natural revelation and special revelation — are two gifts to help us have both. So maybe this story is about Christmas after all.