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Bible Commentaries

Charles Box's Commentaries on Selected Books of the Bible
Matthew 2

 

 

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Introduction

Where Is The King?

- Matthew Two -

Wise men will always seek Jesus. Matthew chapter two gives us a look at the wise men that came seeking Jesus and the wicked act of a godless king that broke the hearts of many families. The wise men sought a king but they found a child who had been born in a stable. But remember this child was Emmanuel - "God with us."

Matthew tells us of the visit of the wise men (two or more men) that came some time after the birth of Jesus. Luke records the account of how the shepherds heard the good news concerning the Savior on the night of His birth. There are many similarities between Jesus and Old Testament events. A couple of examples are, (1) The Jews went to Egypt to preserve life and then returned; Jesus did the same, and (2) Pharaoh was killing babies when Moses was born but he was spared. Herod killed the babies when Jesus was born; but He was spared. God"s Messiah was born and now salvation is a reality!


Verses 1-12

The wise men visit the king - Matthew 2:1-12 : "Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea 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 Jews? For we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him." (Matthew 2:1-2) People are not wise because of what they know, but because of what they seek. These wise men were exactly what we should be - earnest, sincere seekers of Christ. God pity the king, president or beggar who does not know Christ and where he was born.

From this beautiful section of Scripture we observe: (1) The Seekers - "…there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem." (Matthew 2:1) (2) The Sought - "…Where is he that is born King of the Jews?" (Matthew 2:2) (3) The Sign - "…We have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him." (Matthew 2:2) (4) The Search - "…Go and search diligently for the young child." (Matthew 2:8), and (5) The Success - "When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy. And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and Myrrh." (Matthew 2:10-11) Wise men will always seek Jesus.


Verses 13-15

The Christ is taken into Egypt - Matthew 2:13-15 : The wise men "being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod departed into their own country another way." (Matthew 2:12) Instead of seeking the Christ for worship, Herod sought the child to destroy Him. It would be of interest to know what became of these wise men. Did they come to a saving knowledge of the Christ? What did they tell others of Jesus when they returned to their own country?

After the wise left an angel from the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. He was told to get up and quickly take the child and his mother to Egypt. He was to stay there until God told him to return. The reason for this was because Herod was looking for the child and wanted to kill him. Joseph is a great example of obedience. Remember, God said go to Egypt. Now watch Joseph, "When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt." (Matthew 2:14) Wise parent's contin-ually seek the safety of their children. God al-ways has a place of safety for His people.

Observe, (1) The Warning - "…the angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him." (Matthew 2:13), (2) The Willing - "When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt:" (Matthew 2:14) and, (3) The Waiting - "And was there until the death of Herod." (Matthew 2:15)


Verses 16-18

The murder of the infants in Bethlehem - Matthew 2:16-18 : The wicked act of King Herod in killing all these babies must have broken the hearts of many families. From this sad section of scripture we observe: (1) "The Wicked - "Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding worth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under." (Matthew 2:16), and (2) The Writing - "Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, 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." (Matthew 2:17-18)

The only hopeful thing concerning the slaughter of these innocent children is that while their physical lives were taken at the command of a cruel and heartless king they are forever in the care of a loving, kind and merciful God. (Matthew 18:1-5) This is also true of the millions of babies that are murdered each year by abortion.


Verses 19-23

The Christ returned out of Egypt - Matthew 2:19-23 : Joseph did just as God said. He stayed in Egypt until he had a word from God. After the death of King Herod Joseph was told to take the child and his mother back to Israel. Joseph could move about to any part of Israel because the people that wanted to kill Jesus were now dead. When God gave the command Joseph got up and left for Israel with his family. He exactly conformed in every circumstance to the orders given to him by God.

When Joseph knew that Herod"s son Archelaus was now ruler of Judea he was afraid to go there. He, like his father, was a very cruel and wicked man. In order to help Joseph with his fears God told him to go into Galilee. It would be the natural thing, then, to go to live in the town of Nazareth. Both Joseph and Mary had lived there before. (Luke 1:26, Luke 2:4) Christ was not born in Nazareth, yet because he lived at Nazareth, and was educated there. The Jews frequently call him "Jesus, the Nazarene."

It was not a mere coincidence for them to settle at Nazareth. God had a hand in this matter. Matthew says that it was in fulfillment of prophecy. Jesus was to be called a Nazarene. There is not any prophecy in the Old Testament where these exact words are found. The term is derived from the formation of the name "Nazareth" which seems to signify "a sprout or branch." In the Old Testament Jesus is refereed to as a sprout or branch. (Isaiah 11:1, Jeremiah 23:5, Zechariah 3:8, Zechariah 6:12)

Jesus died, innocent children died, many suffered so salvation could be ours. "For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost." (Luke 19:10)

 


Copyright Statement
These files are a derivative of an electronic edition available at BibleSupport.com. Public Domain.

Bibliography Information
Box, Charles. "Commentary on Matthew 2:4". "Charles Box's Commentaries on Selected books of the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/box/matthew-2.html. 2014.

Lectionary Calendar
Wednesday, December 11th, 2019
the Second Week of Advent
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