Highlight: The gifts of the wise men

We all know the heart-warming story of the birth of Jesus. Born in a manger, visited by shepherds and wise men, or magi, bearing gifts. What is the significance, if any, of the gifts of the wise men that are  presented to baby Jesus? Stu Epperson Jr. unpacks the significance of each of the gifts of the wise men.

Gold was a gift for the kings. When it comes to kings, silver bells don’t cut it. You’ve got to have gold. You look at Solomon, he had gold everywhere. They brought gold because they recognize this was a king.”

Frankincense points to His deity, that He is not only king, but He is God. This was the God man, the God baby that they were honoring. Frankincense is what, in pagan and Hebrew culture, they offered to the gods. They offered frankincense to deity.”

Of all the gifts, Stu says that Myrrh is probably the most profound.

“At His birth, Jesus Christ is wrapped in swaddling clothes and offered myrrh by the wise men. At his death, he’s wrapped in burial cloth and anointed with myrrh.”

Myrrh was commonly used to prepare bodies for burial in ancient times. The magi, in their wisdom knew what Jesus came to this earth to accomplish. To put this in perspective, Stu makes an illustration.

“Imagine going to a baby shower and bringing an urn as a present. Imagine the shock. We’re here at Christmas talking about Halloween. What does an urn have to do with a baby shower? Well, that’s exactly what the wise men showed up with. It was pointing to something that would happen, that this child would not only be king, and God, but also savior who would die for the sins of those wise men to give them everlasting life.”

Stu Epperson Jr. is the founder and president of The Truth Network, with radio stations across North Carolina, central Iowa, and Salt Lake City.

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