Feast of the Epiphany: A Tale of Two Cities; January 6, 2019
One thing that stands out in the story from Matthew’s Gospel about the kings coming to the stable in Bethlehem: they are disobedient. In their attempt to find “the King of the Jews,” they receive an audience with Herod the King. It is Herod who points their search in the right direction, with instructions to come back with details. The orders are very clear. Yet after their experience with the baby, Matthew tells us that they went “home by another road,” blatantly disregarding the orders of the king. Their journey to the messiah led them to loving disobedience of even the most powerful ruler.
This story traditionally marks the season of Epiphany, the manifestation of Christ to the wise men and our call to take the light of Christ to the world. This season of Epiphany urges us to probe deeper into the epiphanies in our own lives, and discern, like the magi, what roads God calls us to. It asks what powers we must say no to because of Christ’s manifestation to us: consumerism, racism and hatred? Waste of resources? These things call to us today just as Herod called to the wise men long ago.