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Why do the wisemen call Christ "King of the Jews"

Discussion in 'Biblical Debates' started by Bishka, Sep 5, 2006.

  1. Bishka

    Bishka Veteran Member

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    These wise men came from the east? Do we know where this east is?

    How would they have the knowledge to know of Jesus Christ and Him being the King of Kings?

    Luck? Coincendence? Or was God actually talking and revealing things to people other then the Hebrews?
     
  2. Djamila

    Djamila Bosnjakinja

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    King James Version of the Bible:
    (1) Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,
    (2) Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.

    And a direct English translation from the oldest known texts:

    After Jesus' birth in Bethlehem of Judea during the reign of King Herod, astrologers from the east arrived one day in Jerusalem inquiring, "Where is the newborn king of the Jews? We observed his star at its rising and have come to pay him homage." [Matthew 2:1-2]
     
  3. Djamila

    Djamila Bosnjakinja

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    Reminds me of that scene in Drop Dead Gorgeous. The theme of the local beauty pageant was "Proud to be an American" and they had to choose one thing to demonstrate their pride and make a hat out of it. Some girls chose the Statue of Liberty, others the Washington Monument, others a colorful map of the United States to illustrate how you can come from anywhere but still achieve a good life.

    And then one girl comes out with this monstrosity on her head and says, "My Uncle Bundy's largest ball of yarn in America makes me, Gertrude Simpson, proud to be an American...I kind of misunderstood the assignment".

    I kind of misunderstood the question - hahaha.

    I wouldn't be surprised if the three men came from somewhere, for example, like modern-day Georgia. Georgia was the first country to accept Christianity so it obviously had a level of interaction with the Holy Land.
     
  4. Bishka

    Bishka Veteran Member

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    Do you think perhaps they could come from the Orient?
     
  5. Djamila

    Djamila Bosnjakinja

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    Why not? There is plenty of evidence that Europeans, Middle Easterners, and Far Easterners interacted far earlier than most people are aware - evidence up to and including quite literally the ancient, mummified (naturally) bodies of Europeans and Arabs in China.

    Georgia was by no means a well-known place to residents of the Holy Land during the time of Christ, but it was known enough to have been referenced in some other way than just "the East". Perhaps if we can find other uses of the term "the East" in documents from the, or immediately following, era we can be more certain?
     
  6. Bishka

    Bishka Veteran Member

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    Perhaps.:)
     
  7. angellous_evangellous

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    IMO, the best explanation is that the author or redacter of "Matthew" put these words into the mouth of the wise men.
     
  8. doppelganger

    doppelganger Through the Looking Glass

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    I think the author intended the "wise men" to represent Zoroastrian magi from Persia. Whoever wrote the wiki article about them seems to agree.

    It looks to me like a gospel author at some point found a need to do a little syncretism, and it stuck as part of the story.
     
  9. Bishka

    Bishka Veteran Member

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    Interesting...I wouldn't have thought of that.
     
  10. may

    may Well-Known Member

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    But the star does not lead them to Bethlehem. It draws them to Jerusalem and to Herod the Great. No man in the world holds such means and motive to harm young Jesus.
    this "star" was not from God. With sinister precision, it leads these pagan worshipers right to Jesus—a child vulnerable and helpless, protected only by a poor carpenter and his wife. The astrologers, Herod’s unwitting dupes, likely would have reported back to the vengeful monarch, leading to the child’s destruction. But God intervenes through a dream and sends them back home by another route. The "star," then, must have been a device of God’s enemy Satan, who would go to any lengths to harm the Messiah. How ironic that the "star" and astrologers are portrayed in Nativity scenes as emissaries of God!—Matthew 2:9-12.
    Who do you think made that new star to shine? Remember, the men first went to Jerusalem after seeing the star. Satan the Devil wanted to kill God’s Son, and he knew that King Herod of Jerusalem would try to kill him. So Satan is the one who must have made that star shine.
     
  11. Bishka

    Bishka Veteran Member

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    So Satan has the power of God then? To create a star of Christ's birth?
     
  12. sandy whitelinger

    sandy whitelinger Veteran Member

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    The Wise men were the Magi who came from Babylon. They knew of the "King of the Jews" because of instruction from Daniel.

    http://www.believersweb.org/view.cfm?id=1102&rc=1&list=multi
     
  13. Halcyon

    Halcyon Lord of the Badgers

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    That's my understanding too.

    Also, the "star" they saw was not a star as we know it - a distant sun - but was more likely a star sign.
    They were astrologers, so they foretold events by constellations, plantets and their conjunctions. Assuming for the moment that the gospel account is correct, the Magi could have seen a sign they interpreted as "New King", in a region of the sky associated with Judea. Thus, they would have arrived in Jerusalem believing a new king had been born.
     
  14. may

    may Well-Known Member

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    It is also notable that only these pagan astrologers "saw" the star. Their condemned practice of astrology and the adverse results of their visit, placing in danger the life of the future Messiah, makes me think .
    " satan keeps transforming himself into an angel of light," hmmmm i think that satan is quite powerful , did he not make it look like a serpent was talking in the garden of eden,
    could he not also cause astrologers to ‘see’ a starlike object that guided them first, not to Bethlehem, but to Jerusalem, where resided a mortal enemy of the promised Messiah.
     
  15. Jayhawker Soule

    Jayhawker Soule <yawn> ignore </yawn>
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    It's a story ...
     
  16. sandy whitelinger

    sandy whitelinger Veteran Member

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    More likely an angel. Have you ever wondered why people who were coming from the east (ie. heading west) saw a star in the east? Another thing to ponder is how that star "...went before them..." Matt. 2:9
     
  17. angellous_evangellous

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    Then they were not wise men.
     
  18. Super Universe

    Super Universe Defender of God

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    Priests from Mesopotamia had been told by a strange religious teacher that he had a dream that "the light of life" was about to appear on earth as a babe and among the Jews. So these three teachers went looking. After many weeks of futile search in Jerusalem they were about to return to Ur when Zacharias met them and disclosed his belief that Jesus was the object of their quest and sent them to Bethlehem, where they found the babe and left their gifts with Mary. Jesus was almost three weeks old at the time.

    These wise men saw no star to guide them to Bethlehem. The beautiful legend of the star of Bethlehem originated in this way: Jesus was born August 21 at noon, 7 B.C. On May 29, 7 B.C., there occurred an extraordinary conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn in the constellation of Pisces.
     
  19. sandy whitelinger

    sandy whitelinger Veteran Member

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    The star, grasshopper, not the wise men. Stop trying to confuse the learners.
     
  20. angellous_evangellous

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    I was saying that if the wisemen mistook an angel for a star, the men aren't very wise.:cover:
     
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