Tim Clinton, Ed.D.
“If you’re sincerely seeking God, God will make His existence evident to you.”
-William Lane Craig
A manger. The baby Jesus. Mary. Joseph. A star.
No Christmas play would be complete without the three wise men.
Matthew records the amazing story of the “Magi” who “after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea…arrived in Jerusalem…” (2:1 NASV) They asked, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we saw His star in the east, and have come to worship Him.”
Bible scholars agree that these wise men may have traveled upwards of 800 miles – a journey that could have taken anywhere from several months, to 2 years. They believed the prophets who wrote “And you Bethlehem, land of Judah…out of you shall come forth a Ruler, who will Shepherd my people Israel.” (Matthew 2:6 NASV)
What’s interesting is that after the wise men’s interaction with Herod, Matthew makes a point to tell us that the “star, which they had seen in the east, went on before them, until it came and stood over where the Child was.” (Matthew 2:9 NASV)
The phrase “went before them” in the original Greek actually means to “lead by going ahead of”. There was no “trying to find” the Christ child. No going house to house making inquiry. The star simply led them to “the house” where they “saw the Child with Mary His mother; and they fell down and worshipped Him…” (Matthew 2:11 NASV)
Throughout the Bible we are admonished to seek the Lord:
“But from there you will seek the LORD your God and you will find him, if you search after him with all your heart and with all your soul.” (Deuteronomy 4:29 ESV)
“Seek the LORD and his strength; seek his presence continually!” (1 Chronicles 16:11 ESV)
“You have said, ‘Seek my face.’ My heart says to you, ‘Your face, LORD, do I seek.’” (Psalm 27:8 ESV)
“Seek the LORD while he may be found; call upon him while he is near;” (Isaiah 55:6 ESV)
“You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jeremiah 29:13 ESV)
“But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” (Matthew 6:33 ESV)
If only we had a “star” to go before us and lead the way.
Good news! We do. Jesus promised in John 16 that He would send us a Helper. He called this person the “Spirit of truth” who “guides us into ALL the truth and will “declare to you the things that are to come.” (vs. 13 ESV)
Seek the Lord. Not blindly, or haphazardly, but under the guidance of the Holy Spirit – thinking…praying…meditating on His word.
This Christmas remember – wise men still seek Him…every day. Encounter Him. Fall down. Worship Him.
It will turn your life around.
Tim Clinton, Ed.D., LPC, LMFT (The College of William and Mary) is president of the American Association of Christian Counselors, the largest and most diverse Christian counseling association in the world. He serves as the Executive Director of the James Dobson Family Institute and recurring cohost of, Dr. James Dobson’s Family Talk. Licensed as a Professional Counselor and as a Marriage and Family Therapist, Dr. Clinton is recognized as a world leader in mental health and relationship issues and spends much of his time working with Christian leaders and professional athletes. He has authored and edited nearly 30 books, including The Struggle is Real: How to Care for Mental and Relational Health Needs in the Church.