Eyewitness to Christmas: The Wise Men Returns Home

The Wise Men have worshiped at the feet of the Christ child or baby Jesus. They then bestow three gifts to him of gold, frankincense and myrrh.

When they leave, they probably planned to head back to Jerusalem and inform King Herod of the child’s location as he requested.

“We do not find that the wise men promised to come back to Herod, and, if they had, it must have been with the usual proviso, If God permit; God did not permit them, and prevented the mischief Herod designed to the Child Jesus, and the trouble it would have been to the wise men to have been made involuntarily accessory to it. They were warned of God.” {Mathew Henry Commentary}

However, a good night’s sleep is in order before they begin their journey. Whether by horse, camel or foot it takes roughly twenty minutes to travel a mile.  This is at least a good two to three hour journey back to Jerusalem.

After a long day of traveling from Jerusalem to Bethlehem and worshipping the Christ child they need time to relax, unwind and sleep.

The Lord had other plans for them other than to return to Herod.

“In a dream, they were warned not to report back to Herod.” {Matthew 2:12}

They are warned not to report back to Herod.

The Lord often appeared to people in dreams, such as with Joseph in telling him to take Mary for his wife.

“That the Magi needed a supernatural revelation to warn them not to return by way of Jerusalem suggests their innocent naivet. Even without Herod’s unadmirable character, few kings would be ready to surrender their own rule to a nonrelative some foreigners hailed as king!” {The IVP New Testament Commentary Series}

The Lord often uses the supernatural to reveal things. The Magi probably never realized that Herod planned evil instead of good.

“Herod appointed them to bring him word what discoveries they had made, and, it is probable, they would have done so, if they had not been countermanded, not suspecting their being thus made his tools in a wicked design. Those that mean honestly and well themselves are easily made to believe that others do so too, and cannot think the world is as bad as it really is; but the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptation.” {Mathew Henry Commentary}

An angel appeared to Joseph in a dream

 “So they worked out another route, left the territory without being seen, and returned to their own country.” {Matthew 2:12}

“They were warned not to return to Herod, nor to Jerusalem; those were unworthy to have reports brought them concerning Christ, that might have seen with their own eyes, and would not. They departed into their own country another way, to bring the tidings to their countrymen.” {Mathew Henry Commentary}

The wise men decided on another route. They left without being seen, which leads on to think they probably left under the cover of darkness.  We do not know how large their entourage was, but it is highly probable they had others traveling with hem to tend to their needs and animals.

After the scholars were gone, God’s angel showed up again in Joseph’s dream and commanded, “Get up. Take the child and his mother and flee to Egypt. Stay until further notice. Herod is on the hunt for this child, and wants to kill him.  Joseph obeyed.”  {Matthew 2:13-14}

Notice, once again that the Lord appears to Joseph in a dream. He tells Joseph to take Mary and the infant Jesus and flee to Egypt.  We know from the remainder of the chapter that King Herod killed all the children under two years a short time later.

While Joseph did not know how to escape the danger King Herod threatened, the angel told him.

The family remained in Egypt until they received word of King Herod’s death. 

Has the Lord ever spoken to you through a dream?

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