Your Gift to Jesus

Our text today is Matthew 2:1-12: This morning I am going to remain with the Christmas theme. The season of Advent comes to an end this weekend and we start a new period called the ‘Epiphany of the Lord’ until we reach 10 March when Lent starts. Epiphany means manifestation or appearing or revealing; in other words, God’s self-revelation in Christ. What the Church celebrates today is the manifestation of our Lord to the whole world, after being made known to the shepherds of Bethlehem.

Most scholars will tell us that Jesus was born between 6–4 B.C.E. The visit of the Magi did not happen on Christmas Day but traditionally, we celebrate it as part of Christmas. We know from the Gospel of Matthew that Jesus was a child and he was living in a house.

We spent hours buying presents and on Christmas Day, we give them to our loved ones. The question I want to put to you is ‘what gift did you get Jesus for his birthday? What gift/s would you bring to honour him?’ A perfect gift Jesus would be happy with would be our hearts: our hearts represent our lives and our love. What kind of heart do we want to give to Jesus? The first kind of heart we want to give to Jesus is a heart that seeks him.

The Magi who were foreigners or Gentiles came to Jerusalem seeking the ‘King of the Jews’. They knew who Jesus was. They said that they have come to worship him. Jesus wants us to seek him and find him, not just know him.

There is a great honour and joy for seeking and finding someone. As we seek out God with our own resources and time, God is honoured. Deuteronomy 4:29: “If you seek me with all your heart and with all your soul, you will find me.”

The second kind of heart that we want to give to Jesus is a heart that surrenders to him. The Magi surrendered their gifts to Jesus. They gave him gold, incense and myrrh. Similarly, we give him our hearts that surrenders to him.

Finally, the third kind of heart we want to give to Jesus is a heart that celebrates him. The star led them to Jesus. For these foreigners, Gentiles, non-Jewish people, there was great joy in finding Christ. Their response was overwhelming, astounding, one of great joy. They fell down, bowed before him and worshipped him.

When our hearts study and seek him, find him, save him, behold him and rejoice in him, we see great glory and honour. This very day, how have we responded to the birth of Jesus? Are we prepared to give our hearts to Jesus? Is your heart seeking him? Is your heart surrendering to him? Is your heart celebrating him? What are you giving to Jesus this Christmas? Here is my heart Jesus, take my heart!

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