New Stuff
« Thoughts About Nationalism in Worship Contexts (ThinkJump Journal #64 with Kim Gentes) | Main | Twelve Tips of Christmas - 12 Tips for Men Shopping at Christmas (ThinkJump Journal #62 with Kim Gentes) »

The Gift of Worship (ThinkJump Journal #63 with Kim Gentes)

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 and of incense and of myrrh. 
Matthew 2:11 

It has been popular to intermix the story of Jesus' birth with the coming of the Magi and their presentation of gifts for him. While some scholarship has depicted a time frame that may bridge two years between the events, other support sets them just weeks apart. You can see some detailed explanation of the various viewpoints of these two stories and their timelines here.

What is clear from the scriptures is that the visit of the Magi was, by their own words, precipitated by the birth of the "King of the Jews" and their desire to come and worship (Matt 2:2). Thus, these two important storylines have been connected in the history of Christendom ever since.

The Christmas season is often lost in commercialism, shopping and busyness. Even our well-intentioned family agendas can sometimes obscure the focus from the celebration that is God coming to dwell with man- Emmanuel, Christ with us. The foundation of the Christian Christmas celebration is the acknowledgement and honoring of first of all, God's gift to us in the person of His Son, Jesus. But wrapped within the story is the response of those people who left their own lives, countries and palaces to journey to see the true King. To hear of distant wisemen traveling to see Christ seems noble, but the above scripture should gather our attention.

The first response to being in the presence of Jesus was to bow down and to worship him. No pleasentries, no asking questions. Some of the wisest men of the ancient world could do nothing but fall down and worship in the presence of Jesus. This is the profound and honest response of the human being to the encounter person of Jesus.

The second response is also important- "Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts". What is your treasure right now? What do you value most?  It is from that place of that we dare to draw forward our gifts to God.

As we think of worship, and of coming before Jesus, we can see that this bowing our wills and making an offering of love are both components. The token (or gift) we bring is less important than the heart from which it is offered. Still, have you considered whether or not your token of love truly represents your offering of humility and affection towards Christ?

Perhaps a lackluster token represents correctly a lackluster attitude towards Christ and what worshipping him really means. Perhaps we need to examine our hearts and be challenged by the example of the wise men that, though meeting Jesus for the first time, gave him gifts of incredible value. Their hearts, likewise, matched those gifts. They spent 2 years (most scholars believe) traveling in search of Jesus.

May our hearts be ready to worship Jesus with everything we have, for as long as we live!

Kim Gentes

The above scripture is Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. All rights reserved. 


PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

Reader Comments (1)

Kim, thanks for the reminder that our heart is more important than the gift, but to check ourselves on the gift to get a true reflection of the heart. God bless your ministry.

December 13, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBeth Ipock

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>