TEXT: Matthew 2:7-11:
7 Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, enquired of them diligently what time the star appeared.
8 And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.
9 When they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.
10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.
11 And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense and myrrh.
After preaching the Gospel every day for 367 days straight throughout the 2016 presidential campaign season, I am preaching the Gospel every day throughout the first 100 days of President Donald Trump’s term. If you think a new president being in office is the only thing needed to save America and ‘make America great again’, you are woefully deceived. The church must follow through and “keep the main thing the main thing: and that is reaching unbelievers with the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and praying for their salvation, for the problem in America is not only disobedient presidents, politicians, and people, but disobedient pastors, preachers, and parishioners who have refused to obey the Lord’s Great Commission which is to, ‘Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature,’ and who have refused to obey God’s repeated commands to ‘pray without ceasing’ for unbelievers, believers, and political leaders.” So, we encourage you to pray for the new president, but not to get caught up in the political happenings like the world does. Nothing much is going to change until people get saved and get their hearts right with the Lord. And that is what this campaign is all about.
This campaign is inspired by the following three verses: 1 Corinthians 2:2 which says, “For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.” Acts 5:42 which says, “And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.” And 2 Timothy 2:4 which says, “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.”
This series is not for Christians necessarily. However, I do hope you are one of those saints who still loves to hear the “Old, old story of Jesus and His love” — As another hymn says, “For those who know it best Seem hungering and thirsting to hear it like the rest.” This series is primarily for unbelievers, so they can hear and understand the Gospel and be saved from sin and the punishment of sin which is hell. This is message number 35, day 402 since Jan. 1, 2016.
Marshall Segal said, “The story of the world meeting Jesus in the flesh is a story of the world finally finding full joy in God.”
After hearing from the Jewish scribes that Jesus’ birth had been prophesied to take place in Bethlehem, Herod takes the wise men aside and inquires about the specific time the star appeared. Knowing that it would have taken the wise men months to determine the significance of the star, plan their journey, and then trek five hundred miles across the desert on camelback, it is safe to assume that the star had appeared several months if not more than a year prior to the wise men’s arrival in Jerusalem. Herod recognizes this and asks the wise men to tell him when the star first appeared. He deduces that that must have been the time the child was born. He tells the wise men, “Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.” Of course, we know that he has no intent on doing such a thing.
Dr. Warren Wiersbe says, “It is no surprise that Herod tried to kill Jesus, for Herod alone wanted to bear the title “King of the Jews.” But there was another reason. Herod was not a full-blooded Jew; he was actually an Idumaean, a descendant of Esau. This is a picture of the old struggle between Esau and Jacob that began even before the boys were born. It is the spiritual versus the carnal, the godly versus the worldly.”
The wise men begin their journey to Bethlehem from Jerusalem, a trip of about five miles. We see that the star which they had seen in their homeland now moves ahead of them until it comes to “stand over where the young child was.” This star was no ordinary celestial event. Stars, because of the rotation of the earth, appear to move from east to west. However, this star would have had to moved from north to south, as Bethlehem is south of Jerusalem. The only explanation is that the star was divinely guided as it appeared to move ahead of the wise men and then stopped directly over the place where Jesus lived with Mary and Joseph. When the wise men saw the star that pointed them to Jesus Christ, the Bible says “they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.”
The words translated as “rejoice” and “joy” come from the same root word in Greek. It means to be glad, to be happy, to be cheerful, or to be delighted. But, not only were the wise men joyful, they had “exceeding, great” joy. At long last, their journey to find the newborn King was complete. And though, by all outward appearances, He was not yet a king and had done none of those things associated with kings or any of the things that the prophets had said He would do, just by His appearance, He brought joy to the hearts of these men who had searched long and hard for His arrival.
Joy is a theme that we see all throughout the story of Jesus’ birth. When the angel announced that Elizabeth would give birth to Jesus’ forerunner, John the Baptist, he said, “You will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth.” When the angel announced Jesus’ birth to the shepherds outside Bethlehem he said, “I bring thee glad tidings of great joy that shall be for all people.” The glad tidings of the Gospel are not for a few, not even only for the children of Israel, but for all people on the face of the earth. We see this in the journey of the wise men — pagan astrologers from afar — who had joy bursting forth in their hearts when they realized that they had finally found the child Jesus.
The joyous message of Jesus’ birth continues all the way through to the end of Jesus’ time on earth. After He died on the cross, rose from the dead, and ascended into Heaven, Luke records that the disciples “worshiped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy.” It is this great joy that Jesus wants to impart to your life today. Isaac Watts was onto something when he wrote these timeless words:
Joy to the World, the Lord is come!
Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare Him room,
And Heaven and nature sing.
Joy to the World, the Savior reigns!
Let men their songs employ;
While fields and floods, rocks, hills, and plains
Repeat the sounding joy.
No more let sins and sorrows grow,
Nor thorns infest the ground;
He comes to make His blessings flow
Far as the curse is found.
He rules the world with truth and grace,
And makes the nations prove
The glories of His righteousness,
And wonders of His love,
Is your heart prepared to make room for King Jesus? Are you ready for Him to eradicate the power and punishment of sin from your life? Are you ready for Him to let His blessings flow to you and through you? Then, it is time for you to place your faith and trust in Him. Here is how you can do that today:
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to GospelLightSociety.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.