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DAILY DEVOTIONS
 

  In more than three decades of my Christian life, I have been blest by 2 types of Daily devos' (matter not exceeding 500 words) in universal Christian literature. Not only those Devos' which have a different theme everyday but also the ones which revolve around a certain theme over a period of time, say a fortnight, have richly edified me. In fact, both styles have their own inherent advantages. If the former style caters to the varying spiritual needs of a christian from day-to-day, the latter aims 'to ground' a child of God in a certain subject in order he derives the full benefits of the deep insightful study of a certain topic, spread over a fixed span of time.

In my Daily devo page, I have consciously tried to go in for 'a blend of both the styles' whereby within a constant theme, I would be aiming to focus on different facets of it which admittedly is a closer imitation of the 'Constant theme' style than the 'Varying topics' one.

As the month of December coincides with the Christmas season, in this month I intend to dwell exclusively on all the topics revolving around Christmas using the visit of the Wise man described in Matthew 2 as the base.

Let me wish you a happy and an edifying read… oh yes-MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL OF US!

Suresh Manoharan




December 7th

Wrecking yet another Myth





Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him. - Matt 2:2
 
  Our trip of meditation on the visit of the Wise men or Magi starting from Dec 1stth (refer Daily Devo of the said date) with overriding intention of understanding the significance of Christmas in its entirety had taken us through a seemingly confusing maze of 2 Gospels appearing to be in contrast with each other (which is actually, not the case as God’s Word is infallible), made us look closely not only the perseverance of the Wise men in seeking the Christ-child but also on that of Jesus’ parents in obeying God, and even zero-in on the exact place of birth of the Christ-child in Bethlehem. In the process, we had exposed some of the traditional myths like ‘Wise men came exactly on First Christmas’ for what they were…a baloney. Honestly, I sometimes think that some of the myths were founded to add to the visual appeal of the Nativity scene. For the sight of the Wise men with their flowing robes and all, at the manger, at once adds a dash of color to the scene. Now yet another ‘colorful’ scene associated with the Wise men, is that of the Star leading them in their desert journey. A myth, if there was one.

Now today, whilst focusing on the journey of the Wise men, let’s expose and destroy, this traditional myth of the Wise men having been guided by the Special Star, colorful as it seems. Firstly, it has to be said that they hailed from a land which lay to the east of Land of Israel like Babylon (Refer also Daily Devo dated 2nd Dec) whose Wise men were all acquainted with the writings of Prophet Daniel for historical reasons, as Prophet Daniel had not only occupied a position of high authority there but had also saved the lives of their fathers- Daniel 2:24. It has to be noted here that Wise men or Magi in the courts of Kings of those times of the East were having a dynasty of their own, much like the Kings in whose courts they served – Esther 1:13-14. Since, they knew that the writings of the Jewish prophet Daniel (Book of Daniel 9:23-24) were pointing only towards Anointed One also of the Jewish background, it follows that once the Special Star appeared, they set forth for the land of Israel and not to any other place, without any guiding star to guide them. If the Star was guiding them, all along, after reaching the Land of Israel they wouldn’t have stopped in Jerusalem to enquire therein about the whereabouts ‘of the King of Jews’. Right? Nor is the record in the Scriptures of they pointing at the Star in the presence of residents of Jerusalem or King Herod and saying ‘We saw this very Star, two years back’, which would have been the easiest thing to do, on the other hand they simply said that they saw a Special Star of the King of the Jews, two years back. Fallacy of fallacies, if the Star, had been guiding them, they wouldn’t have stopped in Jerusalem, at all in the first place but would have simply followed its trail to Bethlehem. Let the Bible have the last word on this subject… It states very clearly that only after their meeting with King Herod, the Star which they had seen in their native land ‘re-appeared’ to guide them straight to Bethlehem (Matt 2:9).

Prayer:

Father, enable all of us to understand that we ought not to add anything more to Christmas, other than what is already stated in the Scriptures, just for the sake of making Christmas more colorful. The occasion of thy Son coming to this Sin-marred world to save us from iniquities is reason enough for us to celebrate and rejoice. Let this truth be always embedded in our hearts. Amen.
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