Exploration in wisdom

St. Michael and All Angels Anglican

St. Michael and All Angels Anglican

church —Chemainus

Having recently celebrated Christmas, the Birth of Jesus the Christ, for many it is a time to return to normal – when the shepherds and the Wise Men have left.

After all, most of us know we can only be on a high for so long before desiring a time that is calmer and that does not make quite so many demands.

Most of the frenzy we get caught in is self-imposed.

One cannot help but wonder why, seemingly, almost every group or organization feels the need to have Christmas or year-end do’s.

Unless the functions are overtly Christian and/or Christmas related, why can’t they take place at some other time that doesn’t swamp us – at a time when we might better be able to enjoy them? Might this perhaps be wiser?

Epiphany is the time we celebrate the visit of the Wise Men to Jesus.

As with most of the events the Gospels surrounding the birth of Jesus, this too has been romanticized.

We sing carols/hymns such as “We Three Kings of Orient Are…”

The truth is the Gospel says nothing about them being wise men or kings. What the gospel in the original Greek does say is they were Magian (magos – from which we get the name magician) which were Persian astronomers or priests – the representatives of the secular wisdom and knowledge of the time. They are deemed wise because they recognized where true knowledge or wisdom was to be found – in Jesus – and came in submission to Him.

I firmly believe Jesus is the Immanuel (God with us) of which the Gospel speaks (Matthew 1:23) as fulfilment of the prophecy of Isaiah.

Whether or not one believes in Jesus and Who He claims to be, one would be hard pressed to say that what Jesus has to say on any score is not profoundly wise. Though it sounds trite, I think there is truth and value in the saying “The wise still seek him.” In Proverbs 9: 10 we read that “The first step to wisdom is the fear (reverence) of God.”

From time to time, if you are like me in this respect, one meets people who almost instinctively one recognizes as wise. It is good to be in their presence, we learn from them, we experience calm and we seem to have a greater sense of peace and perspective in their presence.

Life can make more sense for time with and around them. Clearly there were many who experienced that with Jesus.

My hope and prayer is that you will be able to discover that in Jesus. A sure way to do so, is to read one of the Gospels (I recommend the Gospel of John) and make a note of the things that Jesus says and take time to reflect on them. Rather than take my (or anyone else’s word for it, try it for yourself).

I am confident any of us can become wiser from the effort of doing so.

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