Daily Dose, Dec. 20 — Christmas Characters

            In the time of King Herod, after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, asking, ‘Where is the child who has been born king of the Jews? For we observed his star at its rising, and have come to pay him homage.’ When King Herod heard this, he was frightened, and all Jerusalem with him; and calling together all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Messiah was to be born. They told him, ‘In Bethlehem of Judea; for so it has been written by the prophet:  “And you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,    are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler    who is to shepherd my people Israel.” ’ Then Herod secretly called for the wise men and learned from them the exact time when the star had appeared. Then he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, ‘Go and search diligently for the child; and when you have found him, bring me word so that I may also go and pay him homage.’ When they had heard the king, they set out; and there, ahead of them, went the star that they had seen at its rising, until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw that the star had stopped, they were overwhelmed with joy. On entering the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother; and they knelt down and paid him homage. Then, opening their treasure-chests, they offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they left for their own country by another road. (Matthew 2:1-12) Wise Men I find myself getting mad whenever I hear people hammering on folk because they happen to be rich.  God included the wealthy Wise Men in the original Christmas celebration.  God did not banish them from the manger news because their camels were manufactured in Germany or their degrees were from the Ivy league schools.  They too were included though long after the shepherds found Jesus a lying in the manger.  They brought gifts worthy of a King and they did their part.  They refused to cooperate with hateful Herod.  They knelt and paid their homage which indicated that they knew that this child was above them.  It’s a wonderful thing when the wealthy and wise come to Jesus and worship.  People get helped and healing happens whenever our resources are given to God.  The world is always made better when, rich or poor or somewhere in between, we find a way to give ourselves to Christ. -- Dr. Don Martin