What Are the Three Gifts Given to Baby Jesus?
Photograph by.marilyna/iStock/Getty Images One of the most well-known biblical Christmas tales tells of three kings, sometimes known as magi or wise men, who traveled for 12 days in search of the infant Jesus in Bethlehem after being guided there by the star known as the North Star. According to the Gospel of Matthew, this story served as the inspiration for Three Kings Day, also known as the Feast of the Epiphany, which is celebrated on January 6th by Christians across Spain and Latin America.
1Three Prophetic Gifts
According to the book of Matthew, the three magi, later named as Caspar, Melchior, and Balthazar, presented the Christ infant with three gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh, which were later recognized as gold, frankincense, and myrrh. In this case, gold indicated a recognition of Jesus’ monarchy, while frankincense represented his future function as priest. As a funeral ointment, myrrh alluded to Jesus’ death on the cross and, hence, his role as the Redeemer of the world. Since beginning her professional journalism career in 2007, Nathalie Alonso has covered a wide range of issues for newspapers and publications in New York City, including arts, culture, and travel.
She graduated from Columbia University with a B.A.
What Is the Significance of the Three Wise Men and Their Gifts?
A church service might easily be dismissed as merely another location to “get” something in our consumerist society in the United States of America. Moreover, this frame of mind is not surprising, considering that church facilities and worship services are well-known for providing refreshments, free childcare, beautiful music, positive messages, and much more in a climate-controlled, safe, and aesthetically attractive setting. There is nothing wrong with delicious coffee, children’s ministries, music, and everything else; yet, if we are not cautious, we can end up thinking of ourselves as consumers in our spiritual lives, rather than going to God with our offerings of worship and “sacrifice of praise” (Hebrews 13:15).
- Following the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem, many Magi journeyed to visit him, each of whom followed a different star or light in the sky.
- They were a special class of priests who had been around for a very long time (Daniel 5).
- During Daniel’s time in charge of these Magi, it is extremely plausible that he instructed them about the prophesies concerning the future Messiah (such as inNumbers 24:17andMicah 5:2).
- Their education and authority allowed them to function as political consultants and even “king-makers” — which is an odd link to draw given that the Book of Matthew (in which Jesus is presented as the true king in the line of Judah) is the only gospel narrative that cites this incident.
- “They rejoic[ed] greatly with great pleasure” when they eventually arrived at the house where the Christ Child was residing, and they “went down on their faces before Jesus and Mary and worshipped him” (an appropriate reaction to being in the presence of the King of Kings).
These were not just any old presents that they happened to have sitting around; each one was meaningful at the time it was given and continues to hold great significance for us now.
What Was the Significance of Each of the Magi’s Gifts?
The hue and sheen of gold have made it a valuable precious metal throughout history, and it has been used to make jewelry, decorations, coinage, and idols. 2. Frankincense is a pricey aroma or perfume that is derived from plants found in India and Saudi Arabia. 3. Myrrhis is a unique type of expensive perfume manufactured from rare thorn plants in Arabia and Ethiopia that is used as an antiseptic anointing oil and embalming fluid, as well as an antiseptic anointing oil. While these gifts would have been unusual and expensive for the Magi to send to Jesus’ family in first-century Palestine, they were not unheard of in the ancient world.
- They “honored the King.
- In a similar vein, the fact that these gifts were pricey indicated the depth of their selfless love and devotion for the newborn King.
- The Magi did not spend their gifts on anything; instead, they were praising one another.
- is not the hope of becoming wealthy via your service to others.
- So, in order to enjoy you more, rather than things, I am intensifying and demonstrating this desire by giving up things in the intention of enjoying you more rather than things.
- God, on the other hand, makes it very plain in his word that he does not require anything that we have to offer.
As the apostles preached in the Book of Acts: “The God who created the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples built by human hands, nor is he served by human hands, as though he required anything, because he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything.” The God who created the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples built by human hands, nor is he served by human hands, as though Moreover, he created from a single man every country of people to live on every continent of the planet, having defined allotted periods and the bounds of their living place, in order that they may seek God and, if they were lucky, discover him.
Even yet, Jesus is genuinely very close to everyone of us, for “in him we live, move, and have our being” (John 10:10). (Acts 17:24-28, ESV).
What Is the Deeper Spiritual Meaning Behind These Gifts?
The ancient church believed that the three sorts of gifts clearly symbolized three fundamental characteristics of Christ’s personality, and therefore they were divided into three categories. In this case, the gold represents Jesus’ monarchy, the frankincense represents his divinity, and the myrrh represents his humanity. As a matter of fact, some have argued that the Magi “preached” the gospel in a concrete sense through the gifts they bestowed upon the infant Jesus. Whether they realized it or not, their presents represented the tale of God himself, who descended from Heaven in the form of our King (gold) to perform his priestly responsibilities (frankincense) and finally die for our sins (frankincense) (myrrh).
At the beginning of Jesus’ life, as well as at the conclusion of his life, when he was hanging on the cross (Mark 15:23) and subsequently being buried in the tomb, this element was given to him here (John 19:39).
And, as a result of his resurrection, we have the opportunity to have eternal life.
First and foremost, we must understand that the central message of the Magi tale, gift-giving, and the remainder of the Christmas (or Advent) holiday is that Jesus Christ came to earth to die in order to provide salvation for sinners — meaning people like you and me — who have fallen away from God (1 Timothy 1:15;Luke 19:10).
- Second, just as the Three Wise Men replied to the heavenly light above them by going to Jesus and worshipping him, the Christmas season calls on all of us to respond to Jesus in one way or another during this season of giving.
- This is due to the fact that Christmas provides us with the gospel, and the gospel demands that we respond to it.
- We must, however, make a decision about what we will worship.
- When we bow our hearts to him and put our precious “gifts” in front of him, we are expressing that he alone can fulfill our hearts, and this is because Jesus is the one true King.
- Whoever goes in search of him will find him every time.” iStock/Getty Images Plus/Gama5 are credited with this image.
- The couple has been married since 2008 and have three children, Brooklyn, Bryson, and Abram.
- After completing his undergraduate studies at North Greenville University in South Carolina, Robert went on to complete his Masters at Liberty University in Virginia.
- He has worked in a number of roles including worship pastor, youth pastor, family pastor, church planter, and presently Pastor of Worship and Discipleship at Cheraw First Baptist Church.
To serve God and His Church, he has set himself a life purpose of reaching the unreached with the gospel, discipling and inspiring others to go even farther in their spiritual journeys, and establishing a culture of multiplication for the glory of God. More information on him may be found here.
Why Were Gold, Incense, and Myrrh Appropriate Gifts for Jesus?
Then, when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea during the reign of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem and inquired as to the whereabouts of the child who had been born king of the Jews. As a result, we have come to revere him since we witnessed his star as it rose.’ In the midst of their adoration, they discovered the infant with Mary his mother, and they dropped on their knees and worshipped him. Then, when they opened their riches, they presented him with presents of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.” (Matthew 2:1–2; Matthew 2:1–11) We know very little about the wise men based on the biblical narrative.
- “We Three Kings of Orient Are,” as the song goes, is sung.
- That they were kings, or even when they landed in Bethlehem, is not revealed in the Bible.
- That very little information is provided on the wise men certainly indicates that Matthew’s attention was not drawn to the wise men themselves as a subject of study.
- A literary critic would pay particular attention to the presents since they appear at the conclusion of the story after the kid has been discovered and so occupy a prominent position in the narrative.
It is simple to see why gold is a suitable present for the Lord Jesus Christ. Gold is considered to be the metal of kings. When Jesus was given with gold, it was an acknowledgement of his authority to govern. The wise men were aware that Jesus was the King of kings and that he was the Messiah. When Jesus was given with gold, it was an acknowledgement of his authority to govern.
Incense was also given as a thoughtful gift. It was employed in the temple’s religious ceremonies. It was used in conjunction with the oil that was used to anoint the priests of the nation of Israel. It was included in the meal offerings, which were intended to be expressions of gratitude and worship to God. They did so in order to draw attention to Christ as our great High Priest, the one whose entire life had been acceptable and well pleased to his Father.
Myrrh was traditionally used in embalming. By any human standard, it would be strange, if not disrespectful, to give an embalming spice to a child who is supposed to be the Savior. However, it was neither offensive nor out of the ordinary in this instance.
It was a gift of faith on my part. We do not know what the wise men may have known or suspected about Christ’s career, but we do know that the Old Testament prophesied of his suffering on several occasions, and we believe that they did.
What Gifts Do You Offer?
There is a sense in which we, too, may offer our gifts of gold, incense, and myrrh on the basis of our faith. Make a start with your myrrh. Aside from representing Christ’s death, myrrh represents the spiritual death that should befall you as a result of your transgression against the law. “Lord Jesus Christ, I recognize that I am less perfect than you are and that I am a sinner,” you should say as you lay it at Christ’s feet. As a result of my transgression, I am aware that I will be permanently banished from your presence, and I accept this responsibility.
- That is what I believe.
- According to the Bible, there is no good in man that is not tainted by evil.
- Finally, bring your gold with you.
- As a result, by bringing your gold, you are acknowledging Christ’s authority over your life.
Provide direction and guidance in my life so that I may mature spiritually and be able to appreciate and serve you as you deserve.” If you have gone to the altar believing in everything that the myrrh, incense, and gold represent, you have begun a journey that will bring you enormous spiritual delight and happiness.
They are the only things we have to offer to the one who has given us everything through his love and mercy.
From 1982 until 2000, JAMES MONTGOMERY BOICE served as senior minister of Philadelphia’s historic Tenth Presbyterian Church and as an outspoken advocate for the Reformed religion.
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Why Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh Were Given to Baby Jesus
As we all know from our nativity scenes, some very important guests attended the birth of Jesus: three wise men from the east, who brought presents for the newborn king in the form of gold, frankincense, and myrrh for the newborn king to open. According to Matthew 2:11, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “It is written, “When they arrived at the house, they were greeted by the child and his mother Mary, and they immediately fell to their knees and worshipped him.
Then they opened their treasure chests and presented him with presents of gold, frankincense, and myrrh, among other things.” Comparing the narrative we relate to the Bible’s description of the royal visit, we find that it is frequently embellished with a little additional detail.
One part of the visit that has mostly remained intact is the list of gifts that were brought to Jesus, which included gold, frankincense, and myrrh among others.
They were definitely gifts worthy for a king, and their immense value was the most important aspect of the gifts’ symbolic meaning.
In any case, without delving too deep into extra-biblical conjecture, it’s feasible to derive a few probable meanings from the gifts delivered by the three wise men. The purpose of these priceless presents was plainly to glorify Jesus, but it’s likely that they also had a deeper theological meaning.
The Gift of Gold
As was traditional for royal visits, the wise men arrived with precious presents intended to be given to the newborn king in his honor. As it is now, gold was a highly prized item in the ancient world as it is today. The acquisition of gold was one of the most important markers of wealth among the various sorts of assets mentioned in the Bible (such as precious metals, animals, servants, jewels, and so on) (cf.Genesis 13:2, Ecclesiastes 2:8). Because of its rarity and high worth, gold was particularly linked with monarchy and aristocracy, as can be seen in 1 Kings 10 when the Queen of Sheba pays a visit to King Solomon and presents him with vast sums of gold.
Some have speculated that the wise men’s gift of gold may have predicted another part of Jesus’ mission, in addition to highlighting his royal status.
In the same way, the incarnation of Jesus foreshadowed the presence of God—Immanuel—as well as the sacrifice of atonement he would make on their behalf when he died on the cross.
The Gift of Frankincense
It is an aromatic gum resin that is still widely used in regions of the Middle East and Africa today. Frankincense comes from the tree of the same name. It is made by scraping the bark of specific native species of trees and then gathering the resin beads that have formed as a result of the drying process. A powerful and attractive scent is released when the herb is burnt as incense. Historically, the high expense of frankincense prevented it from being utilized as a popular household air freshener in the ancient Near East.
So the gift of frankincense to Jesus may have suggested to the wise men that they believed the prophesy of the newborn king to be an assertion of divine authority.
When God designed the sacrificial system for use in the Tabernacle and, subsequently, the Temple, one of its most important components was the burning of incense at the altar.
The only incense authorized on the altar was a particular combination of spices blended with “pure frankincense” (v.
34), which had to be sanctified as “pure and holy” (v. 35) and consecrated as such. One might make a hypothetical analogy between this and Jesus’ life as a clean and holy gift to the Lord, as is described in the Bible.
The Gift of Myrrh
Originally from the Near East, myrrh is a fragrant spice made from the sap of a tree that bears the same name. As with frankincense, it may be used as an aromatic incense, but it was also widely employed in the ancient world as a perfume, anointing oil, and even as a medical tonic, according to certain sources. Myrrh was a vital element in the mixture of spices that was used to prepare bodies for burial during Jesus’ lifetime, and it was particularly significant in Jesus’ life (e.g.,John 19:39-40).
Myrrh, like the other two gifts, has a relationship to the Temple, just as the previous two gifts did.
Again, there are direct analogies to Jesus’ consecrated life and sacrificial death that might be drawn to mind.
What Did Mary and Joseph Do with the Gifts?
The riches of the nations, as described in Isaiah 60:6, is being brought to God’s people via Christ. When Mary and Joseph received the gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh, they saw a glimpse of what was to come. And in this particular instance, it is possible that the family’s riches was utilized to assist them in escaping to another country. According to Matthew, as soon as the wise men had left, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph, warning him of Herod’s wrath to come (Matthew 2:13).
A journey of this size would be tough to pull off for a family with little financial resources.
Who Were the Wise Men?
Consider the following passage from the Bible, which describes these pilgrims and their journey to meet the predicted king: Then, when Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea during the reign of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem and inquired, saying, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews?” Because we saw his star as it rose in the sky and have come to pay homage to him.” Herod the king, as well as everyone of Jerusalem, were alarmed upon hearing this, and he summoned all of the top priests and scribes of the people to ask them where the Christ would be born.
- They said that they did not know where the Christ would be born.
- ” Then Herod called the three wise men in private and inquired of them as to what time the star had appeared on the horizon.
- It was then that they noticed a bright light rising above the horizon that followed them until it came to settle above the location where the youngster was.
- In the midst of their adoration, they discovered the infant with Mary his mother, and they dropped on their knees and worshipped him.
- And after being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they decided to take a different route back to their own country.
- But who were these folks in the first place?
- Magi, for example, were considered as essential consultants in the Medo-Persian Empire because of their understanding of science, agriculture, and magic, all of which was in demand at the time.
- At some point during the first century AD, magi had become more well known as persons who read sacred literature and experimented with occult activities.
- Despite the fact that they were prevalent throughout the region, magi were most generally linked with the Parthian Empire, which was located east of Palestine (present-day Iran).
Even after the Babylonian captivity, elements of Jewish culture continued to exist in that region, and it’s possible that the Hebrew Scriptures were among the sacred texts that these great men read in their quest for knowledge and understanding.
The Nations Shall Come to You
A different perspective on the wise men and their gifts might be gained by looking at them through the prism of global missions. Israel was never supposed to be a halting point in the flow of grace; rather, God invited them to be a light for other peoples across the world. One of the most vivid depictions of this concept may be found in Isaiah 60, which describes a future period in which the nations would be pulled to the brilliance of Israel—”nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising”—and the people of Israel would be drawn to them (Isaiah 60:3).
- A variety of perspectives may be taken on the Bible’s account of the three wise men’s visit, even though the story is pretty basic.
- Beyond that, they may have also had associations with the Temple and perhaps served as a metaphor to Jesus’ worldwide mission.
- Scott James is a member of The Church at Brook Hills, where he serves as an Elder.
- He is the author of two family worship books (The Expected One: Anticipating All of Jesus in the AdventandMission and The Expected One: Anticipating All of Jesus in the AdventandMission).
- The Watchman on the Wall is a fictional character created by author Stephen King in the novel The Littlest Watchman.
- As part of our largerChristmas and Advent resource library, which focuses on the events leading up to Jesus Christ’s birth, we’ve included this piece here.
- What really is Christmas?
The history of the 25th of December The Bible’s account of Jesus’ birth, as well as Scripture verses Bible Verses for the Holidays The Bible’s Narrative Prayers for the Holidays The following are the photo credits, listed in the order of appearance: Pexels/Tookapic, Unsplash/JackT, Pixabay/xbqs42, Pixabay/Leo 65, Unsplash/GarethHarper, Unsplash/JakubJacobsky, Pexels/InbalMalca, Unsplash/GarethHarper, Unsplash/JakubJacobsky, Pexels/InbalMalca
Gold, Frankincense & Myrrh – The Truth About Their Significance
Everywhere you look this month, you’ll see children acting out the nativity scene, and at the conclusion of the star-guided journey, you’ll see the Three Wise Men, dressed in dazzling dress-up robes and bearing a gift for each child. The Magi are a part of our Christmas customs, but there is a lot to learn about their role in the birth, particularly regarding the gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh they brought with them. What is the importance of the gold, frankincense, and myrrh in the New Testament?
Biblical Account of the Magi
Biblical academics and theologians have proposed a variety of interpretations on the significance of the gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh that the magi brought to Jesus, according to the Gospel of Matthew, since the early days of Christianity” (2:11). In the ancient world, rich commodities such as gold as a precious metal, frankincense as perfume or incense, and myrrh as anointing oil were traditional presents to be given to a monarch or a god as a mark of respect. In fact, these identical three objects were reportedly among the presents that King Seleucus II Callinicus presented to the deity Apollo at the temple of Miletus in 243 B.C.E., according to ancient records.
- (See Isaiah 60:6 for further information).
- Since then, academics have pondered and argued the issues surrounding them.
- What was the meaning of the presents given to the children?
- The fact of the matter is that we will never know (for certain) the truth regarding gold, frankincense, and myrrh, nor why the Magi traveled half-way across the world to honor the Christ Child with their gifts of these precious substances.
- The Magi (which can be rendered as “magician” but is most commonly translated as “wise man”) come in Matthew 2 after traveling from “the east” in quest of the Baby King.
- When they arrived in Jerusalem, they immediately rushed to Herod to inquire as to the whereabouts of the Baby.
- We don’t know when the visit took place, but we do know that they had been following the star for an extended period of time — maybe as long as two years.
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Three Gifts from the East – Gold, FrankincenseMyrrh
The Magi, in contrast to the imagery we have in mind of three men each bearing a gift, are not numbered. The tale has been embellished by church history and custom to include the names of the men who actually brought the presents – Melchior giving gold, Caspar bringing frankincense, and Balthasar delivering myrrh. (2) Despite this, portrayals of the Magi have changed significantly since their initial iterations, and no one can agree on the exact number of visitors in total. Their gifts to the young Jesus were described as “opening their riches” in Matthew’s narrative.
We aren’t talking about a handful of birthday presents here — regardless of the exact names and quantities, these were definitely affluent men traveling in a caravan with a lot of reputation and a lot to give the world.
The Magi were on their way to congratulate the newly crowned king, thus gold makes sense as a recognition of royalty. Gold was a precious metal that was also attractive and long-lasting. Gold, according to most scholars, symbolized Jesus’ status as a king who would reign forever on an endless throne of glory. That relic belonged in the possession of royalty, even if that royalty resided in the house of a young, impoverished family. Some feel that the gold was something altogether else, which is a fascinating notion that is a little on the edge.
Unless it was a gold-en spice like turmeric, as some people believe it was, gold appears out of place — one of these things is not like the other – This line of reasoning may even be traced back to the production of balsam oil, which is obtained from the resin of balsam trees that grow in the same climate and location as the origins of frankincense and myrrh.
It has a component “renowned for its anti-inflammatory, local anesthetic, and antifungal activities,” and it was formerly called the Balm of Gilead.
There’s no big surprise here, and there’s no outlandish notion that implies something surprising. Only an antique incense that is still useful now may be described as such. Traditionally, the gift of frankincense was seen as an affirmation of Jesus’ priesthood, distinguishing him from a conventional king and establishing him as a unique figure. Frankincense was employed in the temple’s rituals, and priests would burn it in a ceremonial fire. Because it was not indigenous to that region, acquiring frankincense from the east was a time-consuming and expensive endeavor.
Because we now have the ability to evaluate the qualities and modes of action that substances such as frankincense resin and its essential oil maintain, we can discover benefits that go beyond aroma and ceremonial purposes.
Traditional medicine recommends frankincense because of its anti-inflammatory and anti-arthritic properties. Our understanding has expanded to include immune regulating properties, which might explain why it is used for both inflammatory sickness and antibacterial reasons. (4)
Myrrh, the most bittersweet of the presents, had been introduced to Egypt in large quantities for funeral ceremonies, and the practice had spread across the region. Myrrh was associated with death and burial even if it was not used in the mummification process. A depressing present for a new mother to grasp, but one that is lovely when viewed through the lens of her comprehension of his mission. But was it all that themyrrhwas meant to do? While myrrh was traditionally used for ceremonial purposes in the Middle East, it was also utilized for therapeutic purposes in the Far East.
- Myrrh was utilized in ancient China for similar purposes, including wound healing and hemorrhage control.
- In the same way that prophetic statements frequently had both immediate and long-term implications, it is possible that these talents followed a similar dual pattern.
- Whatever the case, it’s entertaining to be entertained — the subtleties of Scripture never fail to astound me!
- (6) While both the temple and Jesus’ improvised cradle were packed with fragrant compounds, they were also working to battle sickness and protect the people who lived in the vicinity.
- The three Magi, according to certain early church history documents, reunited years later to celebrate Christmas with one another, soon before they died.
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What is the Significance of the Wise Men’s Gifts? And, Were These Men Kings (or Magi)?
Don’t forget to check out the video at the end of the article! “WHO WERE THE WISDOM MEN?” has already been discussed. Then we responded with, “HOWDID THEY KNOW?” “Did the Three Wise Men Make Their Appearance?” At the end of the discussion, we’ll talk about “WHAT ISN’T THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE WISE MEN’S GIFT?” and “Was It Really These Men Who Were Kings?” The presents that the Three Wise Men delivered to Jesus are recounted in the Gospel of Matthew (Matthew 2:1).
The Wise Men are likely to have had more than three presents, despite the fact that only three were named. We are also not told whether or not they were kings, even if they were noblemen.
We Three Kings?
A well-known Christmas carol about three kings and the presents they brought to Christ’s birth is performed every year in our church. Due to the fact that the Bible does not mention them as kings, the hymn is not literally valid. This belief is most likely based on the monetary worth of the presents that they gave to Jesus, as well as a misunderstanding of the meaning of the words in Isaiah 60 that talk of the Millennium Kingdom. These persons are referred to as “wise men” in the Bible (Matthew 2:1).
They inquired about the whereabouts of the King of the Jews, who had been born there.
Matthew 2:11 (KJV) And when they entered the home, they saw the small boy with Mary his mother, and they dropped on their knees and worshipped him; and when they had opened their treasures, they brought presents to him, including gold, frankincense, and myrrh, as well as other gifts as well.
They donated their time, talents, wealth, and testimony, among other things:
- They had traveled a long distance to see this Child—a gift of time
- They had followed His star—a gift of talent (read:How did the wise men know to follow His star? )
- And they had given their lives for this Child. It was their desire to worship Him that drove them to bring Him gifts—a present of wealth. When they arrived before Jesus, they “dropped down and worshipped Him.” They acknowledged both His Lordship and His Kingship in the process, which was a gift of evidence. In this article, you will learn what it means to live your life as a testament for Jesus. 3 Easy Steps! )
Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh
The treasures that the three wise men brought were both valuable and significant in terms of prophetic significance. Gold, frankincense, and myrrh are all presents fit for a king, according to the Bible. As a sign of Christ’s divinity as King, frankincense represents His purity as a Priest of God, and myrh depicts His anointed labor as a Prophet and the event of His death, gold is used to indicate His deity as King. Look at what the Bible says about these gifts and what we sing about in the Christmas hymn “We Three Kings” to have a better understanding.
Gold = Kingship of God
In the Bible, gold is used to represent God. It is the most precious of all metals, and it is incredibly uncommon in its purest form, making it the most valuable. Since ancient times, the inherent worth of gold has been recognized, and gold has traditionally been used to honor rulers. King Solomon sat on an ivory throne that was lavishly decorated with the finest gold (1 Kings 10:18). The gold used in the Tabernacle’s furnishings is a sign of Christ’s divinity, and it is used to decorate the interior of the Tabernacle.
The mercy seat and two cherubim on either side of the mercy seat were constructed entirely of pure gold (Exodus 25:10-21).
The purity and value of gold are also connected with God’s laws, principles, and promises—all of which are perfect and pure, and which exceed any standards established by man.
The present of gold, given by one of the three wise men, alluded to the born Son, who was appointed by God to be King of His people and who was given this role by God. The gift of the wise man announced Jesus’ status as King at His birth (Matthew 2:2), as did the gifts of others throughout His life:
Jesus proclaimed Himself as King:
Matthew 27:11 (KJV) Jesus was now standing in front of the governor. As a result, the governor approached Him and inquired, “Are You the King of the Jews?” As a result, Jesus told him, “It is as you claim.”
Some of the people proclaimed Jesus King:
Matthew 27:11 is a Bible verse that teaches about forgiveness and mercy. Jesus was now standing in front of the ruler of the province. He responded by asking “Are You the King of the Jews?” The governor was perplexed. Consequently, Jesus responded to him with the words, “It is as you claim. ”
Pilate proclaimed Jesus King:
18:39 (John 18:39) But you have a custom that I should release someone to you at the Passover: would you agree that I should release the King of the Jews to you? Then he says to the Jews, “Behold your King!” (John 19:14). 19:19 (John 19:19) Pilate then inscribed a title on the cross and nailed it to it. The inscription on the wall read, JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWISH PEOPLE. During His earthly career, Jesus talked about the Kingdom of God 60 times in different contexts. That Kingdom is present on this planet and may be found in the hearts of people who are followers of Jesus.
Verse 2: “We Three Kings” (We Three Kings) King on Bethlehem’s plain gold, I bring Him back to reign over us all as King forever and never ceasing to be a King.
Frankincense = High Priest of God
Frankincense is a fragrant, transparent resin derived from plants in northern India and Arabia that has a strong perfume (Isaiah 60:6; Jeremiah 6:20). It is used in incense and fragrances, and it was highly prized for its scent and medicinal abilities in ancient times. A component of the meat offering (Leviticus 2:16, 16; 6:15; 24:7) and a sweet savor, Frankincense was used in the Lord’s sanctuary (Exodus 30:34). It was also employed as a sweet savor in the temple of Solomon (incense). Frankincense is often used as a religious symbol (Psalm 141:2; Luke 1:10; Revelation 5:8; 8:3).
It also serves as a representation of the priest’s role in bringing the prayers of the people before the Lord (Luke 1:10, Revelation 8:3-5).
Mark 10:45 a.m.
3rd verse – We, the Three Kings I have Frankincense to present; Incense is the property of a Deity close by; prayer and praise, voices raised, Worshipping God from on high.
Myrrh = Prophet of God
Myrrh was a spice that was utilized in medicine, cosmetics, and anointing oil in ancient times. It was added to the oil that was used to anoint prophets before they began their divinely assigned task of exposing God and expressing His will and messages to His people on behalf of the people of God. As a Prophet, Jesus came to the country of Israel (Matthew 15:24), and He did so in fulfillment of a prophesy of Moses that read: Deuteronomy 18:15 is a biblical verse. The LORD thy God will raise up for thee a Prophet from among thee, one of thy brethren, who will be similar unto me; and unto Him you shall pay attention.
He claimed to be a Prophet in His own right, stating, “I am the Prophet.” Luke 13:33 (NIV) Nevertheless, I must walk today, tomorrow, and the day after that, for it is not possible for a prophet to expire outside of Jerusalem’s city walls.
13:57 (Matthew 13:57) They were angered by him, and they expressed their feelings to him. “But a prophet is not without honor, save in his own nation and in his own family,” Jesus responded to their question. In addition, Jesus’ actions as a Prophet verified His prophetic office:
- When it comes to medicine, cosmetics, and anointing oil, myrrh was the spice to have. It was added to the oil that was used to anoint prophets before they began their divinely assigned mission of exposing God and expressing His will and messages to His people on behalf of the people of Israel. According to Matthew 15:24, Jesus came to the people of Israel in the capacity of a Prophet, fulfilling a prophesy of Moses: In Deuteronomy 18:15, the Bible says, ” To thee, the LORD thy God will bring up from among you, among thy own people, one who will be like me
- And to Him ye shall pay attention. As a Prophet to Israel, Jesus Himself validated His position. Using His own words, he claimed to be a prophet and claimed the title: Jesus said in Luke 13:33, “I am the light of the world.” But I must walk today, and tomorrow, and the day after that because it is impossible for a prophet to expire outside of Jerusalem. (See Matthew 13:57 for further information). Then there was the fact that he had insulted them. “But a prophet is not without honor, save in his own nation and in his own family,” Jesus said to them. Additionally, Jesus’ actions as a Prophet verified His prophetic office:
12:49 (John 12:49) In fact, I haven’t spoken anything about myself; rather, the Father who sent me gave me specific instructions on what I should say and how I should say it. Another picture of the gift of myrrh is provided by the book of Revelation. Additionally, oil was utilized in the anointing of the dead, in addition to anointing prophets. In the presence of Jesus at His birth, myrrh was handed to him, alluding to His future life as a Prophet, and it was used at His death to prepare His body for burial.
So, after that day had passed, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome had gone out and purchased pleasant spices so that they may come and anoint him with them.
John 19:40 (NIV) Then they took Jesus’ body and wrapped it in linen cloths with the spices, as was the Jewish custom for burying a body.
Breathes a life of accumulating darkness; sobbing, moaning, bleeding, dying, and so forth I was sealed up in the ice cold grave.
King, Priest and Prophet
As King of Israel (Messiah), Priest of God (to atone for human sins), and Prophet of God (saying God’s words), Jesus came into the world to fulfill his mission. The gifts of the three wise men symbolized each of those duties in prophetic typology, and they pointed to everything that Jesus would do in His incarnation and exaltation as the Son of God. In the same way that the Wise Men gave of their time, skill, and riches, so should we give of ours as well. Let’s not forget one more “t” before we wrap things up: testimony!
Our testimony of His love and faithfulness, together with everything He has done and given to us.makes us smart men as well!
O star of wonder, star of night,Star of royal beauty shining bright,Westward leading, still proceeding,Guide us to thy flawless Light, O star of wonder, star of night, *}}} Please keep in mind that each of these three talents has a future prophetic type associated with it.
Only the prophetic character of these gifts, which were given to Jesus at His birth and which were realized in His incarnation, was discussed in this article.
We’ve seen the near fulfillment, and we’re keeping our eyes peeled for our Blessed Hope (Titus 2:13) and the distant fulfillment of His rule and reign on the earth, which we believe is still a long way off (Revelation 11:15). *}}}
What the Gifts of the Magi Tell Us about Jesus
The journey of the Magi to adore Jesus is commemorated on the feast of the Epiphany. It symbolizes the arrival of Jesus to all people — Gentiles and Jews alike – in one body. The Magi, who had traveled from afar to adore the Christ Child, had seen a star and decided to come. It was they who gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh – each of which reveals something about Jesus’ true nature to us.
What the Bible Tells Us about the Magi
When Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the reign of King Herod, behold, magi from the east arrived in Jerusalem, asking, “Where is the newborn king of the Jews?” According to the biblical account: We caught a glimpse of his growing star and have come to pay our respects to him.” Following their meeting with the king, they set out on their journey. When they got there, they noticed that the star that they had seen at its rise had preceded them all the way to the spot where the youngster was hiding.
They bowed their heads in reverence and paid him tribute.
And, after receiving a warning in a dream not to return to Herod, they decided to take a different route back to their homeland.
Gold – the Kingship of Jesus
The magi’s gifts were more than just a show of riches; they also had a deeper significance. Jesus’ reign is symbolized by the gold. As Daniel 7:13-14 states: “As the visions during the night progressed, I saw coming with the clouds of heaven,” I saw coming with the clouds of heaven. One who resembles a son of man. When he arrived before the Ancient of Days and was introduced to him, he was bestowed with dominion, glory, and kingship; all countries, peoples, and tongues will be devoted to his service.
The Magi saw that Jesus’ reign extended beyond all earthly rulers, and they came to adore him as a result of their recognition.
Frankincense – the Deity of Jesus
The frankincense is a symbol of Jesus’ divinity. As a gift to God, frankincense was typically burnt in the temple throughout the time of the Old Testament (Leviticus 2:2). By presenting this gift, the Magi demonstrated that Jesus is more than just a normal man; he is totally human and fully divine. Because, as it says in Colossians 2:9-10, “in him dwells all the fullness of the deity bodily,” and you participate in this fullness in him, who is the head of every principality and power, you are part of the god.
Myrrh – the Death of Jesus
The present of myrrh, which is commonly used to embalm bodies, foreshadows the death of Jesus. We learn from John 19:38-40 that Nicodemus took myrh to the tomb of Jesus. Following this, Joseph of Arimathea, who was secretly a disciple of Jesus out of fear of the Jews, petitioned Pilate to allow him to take the body of Jesus from the tomb. And Pilate gave his approval. As a result, he arrived and seized his body. Nicodemus, the man who had initially approached him in the middle of the night, returned the next day with a combination of myrrh and aloes weighing around one hundred pounds.
The complete story of Jesus’ arrival is presented in this manner. So that we can be saved, Jesus was born into this world. We have eternal life as a result of Jesus’ death on the cross.
The Magi’s Gifts: Pointing to the Ultimate Gift
The gifts of the Magi shed light on the various facets of Christ’s personae and mission. Jesus Christ is the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords, and in his great generosity, he died in order that we could live. As the Magi aggressively sought Jesus, so too should we follow Christ without hesitation, allowing him to serve as our guiding star as we go through life. When it comes to knowing where Jesus was born, like the scribes did, it is not enough if we do not go to the place where he was born.
- When his location becomes our place, when his time becomes our time, when his person becomes our life, then the predictions come to fruition in us and we become the fulfillment of them.
- For me, he takes on the nature of a living God.
- They do not engage in dispute; instead, they proceed.
- They do not place themselves as the focus of attention, but instead bow down before the One who is the center of attention.
Here’s What History Can Tell Us About the Magi
Christmas Day is celebrated on December 25, but the tale of Christmas does not end there. In many Western Christian traditions, Christmas is celebrated over 12 days, with the feast of the Epiphany falling on January 6, the culmination of the season. Many people think that’s when the “Magi,” or “wise men,” or “three kings,” came to view the newborn infant Jesus for the first time. But were any of these individuals influenced by real-life historical figures? It is difficult to link their depictions to specific individuals, but their descriptions in the Gospel of Matthew, which are only a few sentences long, do correspond to current understandings of the world at the time the Gospel was written, which is thought to have occurred sometime between 70 CE and 85 CE.
Also absent from the record is any indication of the number of males in attendance.
Immediately after Jesus’ birth at the town of Bethlehem in Judea, which was then under the reign of the Roman King Herod, according to Matthew’s Gospel, “certain men who studied the stars came from the East to Jerusalem and inquired, ‘Where is the infant born to be the king of the Jews?'” Our attention was drawn to his star as it rose in the East, and we have come to adore him.” They arrived at Jesus and Mary’s home after following the light of a star, and they brought presents of gold, frankincense and myrrh to them, as described in the Gospel.
Gold was then, as it is now, a symbol of riches and power.
According to Kristin Swenson, an Associate Professor of Religious Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University and author of the forthcomingA Most Peculiar Book: The Inherent Strangeness of the Bible, myrrh is a “outlier” in the Bible.
Swenson explains that Jesus is served wine with myrrh before his crucifixion because it is a painkiller in Mark 15:23, and this is because myrrh is a natural analgesic.
It is clear from the lavish presents that these Eastern guests are “people of immense money and power,” as Swenson puts it, since they “bring things that are kind of evident based on the things they bring.” “They are referred to as Magi in Greek, which was a title that referred to a category of Persian priests at the time of the Greek invasion.
“Their orientation was considerably more in the direction of what we would today characterize as scientific.” Looking to a star is “very much in keeping with the religious tradition of this place at the time of looking to the heavens, the stars, and the planets for information about the gods’ wishes and doings, and some stars or planets were identified with God.” Looking to a star is “very much in keeping with the religious tradition of this place at the time of looking to the heavens, the stars, and the planets for information about the gods’ wishes and doings” The author of the Gospel of Matthew also points out that the Gospel of Matthew portrays a prophecy from hundreds of years earlier, found in the book of Isaiah in the Old Testament, in which the nations of the world recognize Israel as the light of the world and celebrate this recognition with gifts of gold, frankincense, and other valuable gifts.
TIME magazine’s cover article “Secrets of the Nativity,” published on December 13, 2004, highlighted decades of efforts to make sense of the Magi, as well as the numerous futile searches for tangible proof of the nativity scene: After all, from whence exactly in the Orient (which literally translates as “East”) were they coming from?
- It is possible that the presents they carried–gold, frankincense, and myrrh–were brought by camel trains from Arabia, as described in unrelated Bible accounts from Sheba and Midian, both of which are located on the peninsula.
- The most fortunate of all the guesses turned out to be the one made in the 4th century by the designers of the Church of the Nativity in Palestine, whose golden entrance mosaic showed the Magi clothed as Persians, who were also well-known stargazers at the time.
- The Magi enjoyed a long and fruitful postbiblical existence.
- Their number, which fluctuated from two to twelve in different tales, finally settled on three, most likely as a result of their three gifts.
- This is how a medieval Irish account of the guy described him: “The first is supposed to have been.
- beardless and ruddy-complexioned.
- Researchers have speculated that the combination was either intended to emphasize Christianity’s global ambitions or pointed back to an earlier varied threesome, Noah’s sons Shem, Ham, and Japheth, as a point of reference.
Melchior died on January 1st, at the age of 116; St.
Gaspar died on January 11th, at the age of 109.” Many modern Christmas customs depict these three wise men in a way that is influenced by medieval art.
In popular imagination, paintings by painters such as Botticelli, Peter Paul Rubens, and Hieronymus Bosch (as seen above) contributed to solidifying the idea of the Magi as a varied bunch of men.
in 1857, is perhaps the most famous musical depiction of the three men.
And, just as interpretations of the Magi evolved over time in response to events in the world, so too will current events influence how individuals find meaning in the Bible in order to make sense of their own lives.
While doing so, it is critical to remember and acknowledge that we are reimagining for our times texts that, in some cases, defy our expectations, at times confound us with contradictions, and, unless we read them in their ancient Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek originals, rely on translations that are themselves interpreted.” TIME Magazine has more must-read stories.
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Write to Olivia B. Waxman at the following address: [email protected].