|Epiphany - a feast of the people of the Light|
Mat 2:2 ...saying, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him.”
In the Christian calendar, we celebrate the feast of Epiphany, or Three Kings’ Day, remembering the revelation of God to the Jews given to the three wise men from the East.
The foreign wise men sought the Star which represented a King and annointed Jesus with the gifts of Gold to crown His kingship, with Frankincese, reflecting the worship of Him as God, and myrrh, the annointing oil for His ministry.
The Magi, the wise men from the East who apparently knew of the writings of Phophet Micah concerning the signs of the King of the Jews, or the Messiah of the Jewish people came from a distance yet the local Jews didn't observe the star. They left not following Jesus because the ministry of Christ would only start much later ending in His death.
The Magi were foreigners in a land where the Jews were the custodians of faith and all others gentiles. They were not by the law even allowed to enter the temple yet they found themselves right into the living presence of God.
It is a reminder how many in the GLBT tribe has been so rejected by the church but as they seek out to follow the Star of Christ, a revelation is given to them so profound of the nature, work and ministry of Christ to the marginalised, that the mainline church could not see.
The Ephiphany was not so much a revelation to follow the Star or to follow Jesus, for the Star was not moving but at a fixed place. It hovered at the location that Jesus was born, thus proclaiming a light to mankind to God Himself revealed as the Christ.
Jesus was not a prophet leading people to God, but was a King, a Head, God incarnate. Jesus didn't lead people to God, the worship and annointing and glory was to Jesus as God.
The word Epiphany itself comes from Greek "epiphaneia" which means "manifestation", in context is the vision of God or theophany.
They didn't follow Jesus, they soon left after giving birthday gifts and worshipping Him. They had seen the vision of God, and came away satisfied of their journey. It was not a light to see God, but they saw God Himself so gloriously shining and the same light that blinded Saul on His way to Damascus to persecute Christians.
We tend to side track the revelation of Jesus as God by terms such as "praying to God of many names", or to see Epiphany as Jesus being a prophet pointing us a universal and all loving God. So contrasting many religious faiths, Jesus was not a messenger from God, or a great prophet to be followed to reach God, but was the God of Israel from the ancient of times as prophesied by Micah.
The Magi, or the wise men, wasn't vary of our modern day misconception of who Jesus was, but as we embrace Jesus as our Lord and Saviour, we become part of His kingdom, with Him as King.
Jesus was a servant King, and when we become Christians by joining into Him, we become part of His body where He is the head, essentially joining ourselves to all that the kingdom of God has to offer us - the presence of God, the blessings of God, the Hope of eternity in heaven.
We then have access to the light of Christ, which stands on a solid rock of Jesus death and sacrifice for our sins, the unchanging revelation and finished work at the Cross. As Christ is, so are we, because we have been baptised by the waters of redemption, the living waters where we loose our lives to join into one communion of faith in Jesus. We are cleansed that we might be holy in Christ to be connected with God.
The same star, the same light that the Magi saw two thousand years ago, is available to us this day as a beloved child of God for Christ is near to those who seek Him.
As we close our eyes today, see Jesus, the light of God. Our circumstances may be dark and our predicament grave, but the promise of God to us as a child of God in Christ, is the precious connection and bridge established by Jesus that we can see God.
It is not that the Holy Spirit sent by Jesus to be in His place is not there, for often just as the Jews in Jerusalem was not able to see Jesus, we need a new eye sight to see Him.
The Epiphany or revelation for today, is to have eyes to see Jesus and to worship Him as God and Saviour. In our desire to follow Jesus and to do the works of Jesus, we often forget to visit Jesus and to rest at His feet, and just to enjoy the presence of God.
May the light of Christ, the grace and mercy of God, the blessings of God in Abraham shower your life as you come into the throne room of God and be changed from glory to glory.
May the Star of David, the Christ, shine in your life and may this light shine through you to a fallen world needing to hear the Good News of redemption and God's love. It is the light of Christ in us that cannot be hidden but to be manifested as salt to a world of pain, sorrow and woundings.
The light of Christ is seen and felt by others not through good works of charity and the like, but when we have the light of Christ shining from deep within us. We let Christ shine in us when we see Him as God, King, and Saviour hence God comes in to our lives through this revelation and sight. We become the king, priests, servant, and prophet to others naturally when the light of Christ comes shining brightly out of our lives. We become a Holy people and a royal prieshood proclaiming Christ, the revelation of God to a fallen earth.
Hence, when we embrace the light of Christ, He shines through us, and we become the little stars that littered the night four thousand years when God showed Abraham the night sky in the desert of the descendents that Abraham would be having. We have become spiritual descendents of Abraham in Christ, and with it, the blessings of Abraham that the world may be blessed.
At the end of our lives, we go back to heaven, and then join ourselves to the Light once more in eternity to come. The Light, Christ is with us, the Hope of Glory.
The Light of Christ shines through each one of us in different ways touching the world. What is your light to those around you? As GLBT people of faith, what are the light that Christ is shining through you? to the wider body of Christ.
As we finish our season of merry making and travelling long distances for holidays, do we likewise make the effort to travel long distances and spending time and effort just as the Magi did to seek the place where the presence and annointing of God dwells?
Seek God, for the revelation of Christ, the light of the world is waiting to shine through you as we reflect His glory, power, majesty.