I can clearly remember as a child the fear that I had regarding Armageddon. Having very little knowledge about it, only that it was the war to end all wars, and when it happened, horrific things would be about us and the world would be out of control. That fear followed me into adulthood because I still had not learned the scripture as one would have thought I would have being raised in church. Jesus’ return and the end of the earth as we know brought nothing but dread in my heart. I guess I wasn’t alone, nor the first to have experienced it.
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, 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. When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.
Wise men fear and Seek Christ
The wise men were said to be men of great spiritual and philosophical understanding. They knew of the coming Messiah and did not fear it but rather embraced it knowing that God’s plan is the right plan. Their obedience to travel such a great distance speaks volumes of their character. They were invested in this trip with time, money and risk; committed to finding God. That’s what wise men (and women) do. They seek God at all costs knowing that the end result is blessing. But then there was Herod…
Worried men fear and Seek Control
Herod sought Jesus too, but not for worship or wisdom, he sought Him for control. He wanted to destroy anyone he thought would threaten his power as King of Judea, and he didn’t care to kill them young or innocent, calling for the mass murder of all infant boys under the age of two. I somehow block out that part of the Christmas story. The political wickedness that ripped the heart out of mothers. The killing spree that filled Bethlehem’s residents with immeasurable pain was so horrific that Matthew quotes Jeremiah’s mournful words regarding Israel’s pain during the Babylonian Exile in verse 18 ~ In Rama was there a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not.
Perhaps I block it out because it rings too true in society today. Our government will, it seems at any cost, cater to the wicked to keep control, including forsaking God, murdering babies and joining with allies totally against any Christian principal for the sake of power. They should worry, for try as they might, God’s plan will not fail.
Wayward men fear and Seek Comfort
Those who do not know the comfort of Christ will seek comfort in the world at all costs, even freedom. The scripture in Matthew 2 said “all Jersalem” was worried too. They were troubled because they did not know that Christ was coming to bring peace, they only knew Herod was upset and that wasn’t good. They desired no King other than Herod; him they understood. Therefore Jesus was not a King they cared to know. And so it is with many today, content to stay in the ignorance and controlled by what they’re comfortable with than to relinquish full control to God Who will provide them a peace immeasurable.
It’s not hard to see why the world fights against Christianity, because true, undefiled Christianity shatters the lies and deceit that have been created to control a lost generation. Once you truly understand Who Jesus is, the world’s control is gone and you have the freedom to live without fear. You no longer fear the coming of the Lord, but just like the wise men in Matthew you embrace it. You are willing to go and do at all cost and risk, because you know that His coming again will bring wickedness to an end. Why should we fear? Yes Christ came as a baby, but He’s coming again and this time He’s all grown up! This time there will be no risk or danger for those who know Him as their Savior, but to those who don’t there is much to fear.
Do you know Jesus today? If not, give yourself the gift of Peace this Christmas.