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. On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.
Matthew 2:1-12 NIV
On January 6, twelve days after Christmas, many churches celebrate Epiphany. The word epiphany comes from a Greek word that means “to manifest” or “to show.” Christians traditionally commemorated the visit of the magi and the “epiphany.” On the other hand, the Orthodox churches remember the baptism of Christ. Jesus’ first miracle of turning water into wine and His transfiguration are also taught on this day.
1: Merriam Webster defines epiphany as: January 6 observed as a church festival in commemoration of the coming of the Magi as the first manifestation of Christ to the Gentiles or in the Eastern Church in commemoration of the baptism of Christ.
2: an appearance or manifestation especially of a divine being.
What qualifies as an epiphany?
God showed Himself in the person of Christ to the Gentiles. That’s what that holiday is all about. Jesus’ first miracle, the turning of water into wine at a wedding, is also remembered on this day. The Transfiguration, when the disciples saw Jesus’ glory, is also an epiphany. Over and over throughout Scripture Yahweh reveals Himself to us.
Our Advent sermon series is about theophanies or appearances of God. From Genesis to Revelation the Lord shows Himself to His people. We did not go searching for the Creator of Heaven and Earth. The Triune God: Father, Son, and Spirit reaches out to us. The universe around us is evidence of an intelligent being who controls all of space and time. The greatest appearance of God us in the person of Jesus: fully God and fully man.
Study the Scriptures to learn more about Jesus, our Lord and Savior. Read Christian books that help explain the Bible to you. Listen to Christian music and teaching. I am also a resource. Please ask me questions and discuss the Bible with me. I want to aid you in your faith journey with Christ.
Use the Bible as an aid to prayer. The book of Psalms is a hymnal and also a prayer book. God loves you! God protects you! God gives you hope, joy, and peace regardless of your circumstances.