Talks

James Bloice Smith

The witness of the wise Men (matt 2:1-18) (Matthew 2:1-18)

James Bloice Smith, December 8, 2019
Part of the Navtivity Seen series, preached at a Sunday Morning service

The witness of the wise men

Tags: Herod, star



About James Bloice Smith: James became a Christian as a child and owned it in a new way in his late teens. He studied psychology and biochemistry at Bangor University, teaching at King’s College, London University, and theology at Regent’s Park College, Oxford University. He has worked as a Medical Laboratory Technician, in North London as a science teacher and for eight years in student evangelism and discipleship with Agapé. His first pastorate was as assistant minister at Park Road Baptist Church, Peterborough. He has been minister at Headington Baptist Church since 1996. James is married to Marion and has a son, Daniel, who works as an engineer, and a daughter, Naomi, who is a teacher. His interests include people in general, getting into boats whenever possible, the Headington community and ‘fiddling about’-making things and fixing things.
Earlier: Same day: Later:
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Matthew 2:1–18 (Listen)

2:1 Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men 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 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.

13 Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you, for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” 14 And he rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed to Egypt 15 and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, “Out of Egypt I called my son.”

16 Then Herod, when he saw that he had been tricked by the wise men, became furious, and he sent and killed all the male children in Bethlehem and in all that region who were two years old or under, according to the time that he had ascertained from the wise men. 17 Then was fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Jeremiah:

18   “A voice was heard in Ramah,
    weeping and loud lamentation,
  Rachel weeping for her children;
    she refused to be comforted, because they are no more.”

(ESV)

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