The Prophetic Gifts of the Magi – Part 3 

For Part 1 & 2 of this post discussing the gifts of gold and frankincense, look under Shadows & Types of Christ and His Church on the Menu Bar.

We have already discussed how the gift of gold brought to Jesus in the manager by the Magi revealed Jesus as King and divine, and how it revealed the existence of the Bride of Christ (us!) talked about in the Book of Revelation.  We have also discussed how the gift of frankincense revealed the sacrifice of Jesus’ death on the cross. Now let’s take a look at the gift of myrrh.

Myrrh was also taken from a tree by the same manner.

Myrrh is a red gum-like resin taken from a thorny tree that to be harvested must be wounded repeatedly until it bleeds its resin. Gosh. Can’t we just see in this, the crown of thorns placed on Jesus’ head, continually wounding Him and causing blood to flow from His brow.

Myrrh is a bitter spice often mixed with wine and we know that at Golgotha, on His way to being crucified, Jesus was offered a bitter wine mixed with gall (another name for myrrh). We see here, the Lord’s suffering and affliction, represented by the bitterness of the myrrh. This mix of bitterness with the wine, as Jesus is the New Wine of the Second Covenant, can also reveal the life of the church. The church is called to join in the fellowship of His suffering. There is a bittersweet relationship of myrrh mixed with wine.

Not only is myrrh bitter but it is also used as anointing oil and for embalming. It is associated to the Balm of Gilead mentioned in Genesis 37:25 and Jeremiah 8:22 and 46:11).  Jesus is our balm for healing and anointing, as we read in these verses for the healing of God’s people, Israel, which we as the church, have now become.

So in the gift of myrrh, the wise men unwittingly symbolically announced not only the suffering of Christ by bearing the crown of thorns, the life of the church in the fellowship of His suffering but also Christ as healer, our Saviour, by His sacrifice we are saved! The myrrh was brought by the Magi to point all humanity to Christ as the healer of the nations!

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The Prophetic Gifts of the Magi – Part 2

For Part 1 of this post on the gift of GOLD, look under Shadows & Types of Christ and His Church on the Menu Bar.

We have already read how the gift of gold brought to Jesus in the manager by the Magi revealed Jesus as King and divine, and how it revealed the existence of the Bride of Christ (us!).  Let’s take a look at the gift of Frankincense.

Frankincense was a very valuable and key ingredient used in incense. Incense was used by the priests in the temple as they prayed on behalf of the nation of Israel. It speaks of the sacrificial prayers of the saints and the burning of frankincense in the tabernacle which was to continue day and night, never ceasing. So here we see the eternal sacrifice of Jesus as our High Priest in the order of Melchizedek, on behalf of all mankind. We see the sacrifice of Jesus as the pleasing aroma unto God, the “once and for all” eternal, sacrifice.

Keeping the word ‘sacrifice’ in mind, it is amazing to know that the means by which Frankincense was obtained is an astounding announcement of the Lord Jesus’ death. “Frankincense is a white resin or gum. It is obtained from a tree by making incisions in the bark and allowing the gum to flow out…” (http://www.gotquestions.org/gold-frankincense-myrrh.html).

Here we see Jesus (the Tree of Life) on a tree, the cross, being pierced for our transgressions. His hands, feet and his side being pierced until water and blood flowed from His side. Wow. The Tree of Life being pierced, incisions into His body on the cross, allowing this sacrificial, sweet smelling fragrance of His life, to flow out.

And what was born out of His side at this time? What came from Adam’s side? A wife! The Bride! The church! We are a sweet smelling aroma unto God! The birth of the church, was announced at Jesus’ birth by the wise men in the gift of frankincense!


 

The Prophetic Gifts of the Magi – Part 1

I’ve been working on this post since December!

We all know when Jesus was born in a manger in Bethlehem, that the wise men from the East, the Magi, brought gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.  But do we realise that these gifts were prophetic in nature? The gifts actually heralded three amazing things  –  1. Who Jesus is 2. The death of Jesus on the cross 3. The body of Christ as the church.

 

Gold was a highly valued material given to royalty. So here we see Jesus being declared as a royal King. The Magi were looking for the one whom they had been told was the King of the Jews and they appropriately brought him gold, just as King David and King Solomon were brought gifts of gold.

Gold also represented divinity as is seen in the building of the Ark of the Covenant and the tabernacle. When King Solomon built the temple as a dwelling place for God he used an even greater amount of gold than Moses. So here we see Jesus in the manger, being declared by the Magi as both King and Divine.

There is a heavenly city, the New Jerusalem, spoken of in the Book of Revelation. It is called the Bride – which is the Bride of Christ, the body of believers unto Christ. We know that every King has a Kingdom and we are the Kingdom of Christ. This glorious gold city is where God will once again dwell with man as He originally intended. It is made entirely of gold.

So the gold spoke not only of the man Jesus as King of the Jews but also of His eternal Kingdom which is the church, His body – us! 

Isn’t that incredible? We as believers unto Christ, were represented in the gold that the wise men presented to Jesus at His birth. Talk about already having been chosen in Him before creation!


 

 

Until Christ Is Formed In You – (A poem by my husband)

Until Christ is Formed in You

There is a Christmas morn

Celebrated each an’ every day

When Christ the Saviour is born

Not in feeding trough or hay

But in hearts who choose believing

Having seen the Son of God

Through faith in hearing receiving

The Life that comes from above

That Life grows daily increasing

In hearts of those now changed

Ever fuller deeper and wider

None will ever be the same

A will of our own no longer

Our life surrendered from view

A decreasing of one for the other

Until Christ is formed in you

One heart one mind one purpose

Given to His will from above

To surrender all for our Master

His Life expressed through Love

As one this Christ is revealed

Not a single part left out

We need each one to see the Son

Full measure full stature full clout

He’s revealed to all His timeless plan

To unveil His ageless story

His Victory over death ‘n’ Devil

Christ in us the Hope of Glory

All Praise the King of Life

He’s done with shame and loss

He’s restored to Him the Fullness

Who entrusted to Him the lot

His Love is never failing

Eternally none shall ever fall

From Grace complete and saving

His Life that is All in All.

The Christmas Matrix

The first year I worked in a Christmas warehouse put together by combined charities, I saw over 400 families represented and the second year almost double that. Parents who were eligible for support came and chose up to 6 toys/gifts per child under age 12. Some families had 8 children, others one. Trolleys were donated from the local food store and I watched trolleys leave the warehouse loaded to the hilt, many with more than one trolley full. There were thousands of donated toys; barbie dolls, trucks, kites, puzzles, clothes, boogie-boards, scooters, jewellery, fluffy toys, gadgets, books and even bicycles. Everything was brand new.  The charity and kindness of the local community who donated all these goods was astronomical and most moving.

Putting aside all the warm fuzzies of such an experience, I have to admit that something about the whole event disturbed me. I kept asking myself “Why are we doing this? What message are we giving the community?”  It seemed to me that even though our intentions and motives were good, kind and compassionate, something had gone skewwhiff.  We had become part of the message to the community that Commercial Christmas is crucial to a happy Christmas and that Christmas is the most important time of the year for love, generosity and family.

Just over 2 years ago, my husband and I began our journey into what some call ‘organic church’. Surprisingly, this journey has become more about knowing a bigger Christ than ‘doing church’, which we are literally, eternally, grateful for. Along the way, one of the things the Lord has opened my eyes to, is that the big ‘Christmas day’ that it has now become, is just another day to Him.

If you are poor, you’re not a lesser person for being poor at Christmas too. If you love the Lord at Christmas, why not love Him all year? If you love to give gifts to people, why not do it all year? If you don’t have a big family at any other time of the year, why do you have to feel unusually lonely on the 25th of December? If we love to sing about Jesus and tell children about Jesus being born in a manger in Bethlehem, why not sing about Him every day and tell our children about who Jesus is now?

I have understood that God is outside of time and is completely obsessed with Jesus all the time, for it pleased the fullness to dwell in Him. Jesus is no more celebrated in heaven on one particular day than on any other. I was so blessed to read a blog from a brother (click here to read). He beautifully points out the awe and wonder at Jesus being born here on earth as both the Son of God and the Son of Man – that it was His humanity, the fact that here was God’s eternal purpose being fulfilled, that captivated everyone and captured the attention even of the angels and demons alike. I don’t believe their obsession with Him has ever changed. Jesus is the most glorious of all that has ever been and will ever be. He is eternal. He is forever. He is All and in all. He is astoundingly and outrageously awesome. He is glorious. He can never be described in His fullness. He is magnificence itself. He cannot be reduced to a once-a-year birthday boy. He is so much more than that…..So much more.

So have a great day tomorrow and the next day and the next day and the next day ……. 🙂