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The Epiphany of our Lord, 01/06/2018

Sermon on Matthew 2:1-12, by Beth A. Schlegel

Isaiah 60:1-6 and Matthew 2:1-12

Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men[a] from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose[b] and have come to worship him.” When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet:

“‘And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,     are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler     who will shepherd my people Israel.’”

Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star had appeared. And he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.”After listening to the king, they went on their way. And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. 11 And going into the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. 12 And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.



Of all that can be said of the Epiphany, it is certainly an undoing -- an undoing of the human division brought about at the Tower of Babel as an icon of human ambition.

If there was anything King Herod wanted, it was for the whole world to bow down and worship him.

                Or at the very least, to preserve the homage paid him by his own realm.

This was the aim of every king’s domestic and foreign policy, military strategy, and political presence.


Is it not still the case?


The Rev. Beth A. Schlegel
York PA 17404
E-Mail: pastorschlegel@live.com