“When they saw the star they were overjoyed” Matthew 2:10.
When my son was very young, we would pull an old blanket out into the yard, lay back and watch the stars. I tried to identify some of the constellations, but he was much too young to understand, and I was too far removed from high-school science to remember. But it is a memory I cherish—stargazing with my boy.
Scholars believe that the wise men were “stargazers” as well—actually Persian astronomers. How did they know about a Jewish prophecy? Remember Daniel, from the lion’s den? When the Jewish exiles left Babylon after seventy years of captivity, Daniel opted to stay as did many other Jews who had put down roots in the area. Daniel knew the Hebrew Scriptures well and likely shared the ancient prophecies of a coming King who would rescue His people. These were handed down through the generations to the time of Jesus’ birth. When the star appeared and the astronomers put all the pieces together, they realized something very special had happed in Judea.
One of my favorite descriptive names of the Lord is El Emunah—the Faithful God—because it reveals Him as the God who keeps His promises. The Magi were overjoyed when they saw the star because they understood that the ancient prophesy of a new King of the Jews had been fulfilled. God had kept His promise to send His people a Messiah.
The same God who was faithful to the Jews has promised His faithfulness to you. He has promised to redeem you and restore your life. He has promised to walk with you and guide you every day. He has promised His presence, His peace and His unfailing love. He has promised to prepare a place for you in heaven, and He has promised to come again to take you home.
The Magi rejoiced when they saw the star because God had kept His promise to the Hebrew people. He continues to be the Promise Keeper today for all who trust in His Son Jesus. That’s something to rejoice about!