25 Days of Christmas – Life on the Run
Prophesy said that Jesus would have to come out of Egypt. Oh how God uses everything to make His purposes known. We left yesterday with the visit from the wise men of the east. Would Mary and Joseph have had to flee to Egypt had the magi not stopped to see Herod on their way to visit Him? We don’t know. But we do know that somehow Jesus would have to live in Egypt to fulfill the prophesy.
Why did the magi stop to see Herod in the first place? Well, he was the ruling leader of the Jews at that time. It was the “proper” thing to do. But Herod was an evil, sinful man. He knew enough of the scriptures to know that this new king would challenge his role. So he sweet talked the wise men into thinking he wanted to pay tribute and would they please let him know the baby’s location once they found Him. They might have done so too if God hadn’t intervened once again. The wise men are warned to avoid Herod and they go home by a different route.
Now Herod would soon hear of this (by not hearing from the wise men he knew he’d been duped) and he was furious. God also knew this and warned Joseph to take Mary and Jesus and flee to Egypt. How nice that they could pick up and go, as the wise men had provided gold and frankincense, and myrrh which they could sell or use during the time of their exile. Guess God had everything under control!
Herod did indeed enact his revenge and massacred all the Hebrew male children in Bethlehem, two years old and under in an attempt to destroy this new king. Those parents would feel a small taste of the pain and anguish God the Father would feel when His son would die years later on a cross for man’s sin. But it’s important to remember that God intervened. Christmas is all about God intervening for us!
God’s son Jesus had a rough beginning. He was born to a virgin and probably heard snickering about that as he grew up. He spent part of His childhood as an exile in a foreign land. He had to deal with everything about being in a human form and the knowledge of where his destiny lay. No mere mortal could do what He did. He lived as one of us so He could set an example for us. To lead the way. He was exiled, ridiculed, persecuted, forsaken, and broken for us. For us. Take a moment today to take that in and really give Him the thanks only He deserves.