Advent: The Journey to Christmas, Day 23

King, God, and Savior

In Matthew 2:11, the Magi bring Jesus three famous gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Did you know these gifts have special significance in the Old Testament and reflect the One they came to worship?

Gold represents royalty in Psalm 72:15, and the gift of gold affirmed Jesus as the King of Kings. Frankincense is related to the worship of God in Exodus 30:34, and the gift of frankincense acknowledges that Jesus is God. In Exodus 30:22-25, myrrh was used to anoint people for special purposes. The first time Jesus received myrrh was as a gift at His birth. The last times Jesus would be given myrrh were on the cross and during His burial. This gift points to the special purpose of Jesus’ life: He would die on the cross to save us from our sins and then be raised to life, victorious over death.

The verse in Matthew 2 mentions that when the Magi saw Jesus, “they fell down and worshipped Him.” We worship Jesus as our King because He has “all authority on heaven and earth” (Matthew 28:18-20). We worship Jesus as our God because “through Him all things were made; without Him nothing was made that has been made” (John 1:3). And we worship Jesus as our Savior because  “God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). Ask God to use this Advent season to bring you closer to Jesus through worship, just like the star brought the Magi to worship Him.

Prayer: Father, thank You for leading me to You. Just like You brought the Magi close to Jesus, please bring me closer to Jesus than I have been before. Jesus, I worship You as my King, my God, and my Savior! Holy Spirit, help me guide other people who are far from you to draw near and worship Jesus.

Download today’s image here

Sources: John MacArthur, Matthew 1–7, William Hendriksen, Exposition of the Gospel According to Matthew, David Platt,  Exalting Jesus in Matthew, Grant R. Osborne, Matthew, (Zondervan Exegetical Commentary Series on the New Testament). 

When they saw the star, they were overwhelmed with joy. Entering the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother, and falling to their knees, they worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh.

Matthew 2:10-11 CSB

May he live long!
May gold from Sheba be given to him.
May prayer be offered for him continually,
and may he be blessed all day long.

Psalm 72:15 CSB

The LORD said to Moses: “Take fragrant spices: stacte, onycha, and galbanum; the spices and pure frankincense are to be in equal measures.

Exodus 30:34 CSB

The LORD spoke to Moses: “Take for yourself the finest spices: 12½ pounds of liquid myrrh, half as much (6¼ pounds ) of fragrant cinnamon, 6¼ pounds of fragrant cane, 12½ pounds of cassia (by the sanctuary shekel), and a gallon of olive oil. Prepare from these a holy anointing oil, a scented blend, the work of a perfumer; it will be holy anointing oil.

Exodus 30:22-25 CSB

Leave a Reply