In today’s reading I would like to focus on the reactions to Jesus by the people that surrounded Him. We will see that in Matthew chapter two that it is often the same at is today. When encountering Jesus each one of us must respond. His existence and his sacrifice for sin along with His eternal Kingship demands a response from each of us. It would be impossible not to respond, because ignoring Him in itself is a response.
The first group that we will look at are the Magi; this group of men traveled a great distance to meet the new King in person. These men were considered to be “King Makers” in the region and they were greatly respected. There is little doubt why we see them mentioned in Matthew’s gospel since Matthew focuses on the Kingship of Christ. The Magi were gifted and trained in astronomy (which was at that time greatly mingled with astrology). The Magi came to meet the new born King for one reason, that reason was to worship Him. When they arrived, they did not just worship Him in jest. They not only traveled a great distance they gave gifts that cost them a great deal of their income. These men came and in worship gave themselves to the King of kings who deserves all that we have. This, obviously, is the proper way to respond to the savior.
The second group of people that we see are the religious crowd. The religious crowd, including but not limited to, the Pharisees and the Sadducees. This group of people should have been the ones who were most ready to receive the Messiah. They had been given the word of the prophets. These men had a special revelation as to the coming Messiah. Even though all of the signs were in place, this group was simply indifferent to the new King. I personally think that they had things just the way that they liked them and did see the need to rock the boat. They had wealth, prestige and the respect and obedience from most of the people. Just like the church of Laodicea they “had need of nothing”( Revelation 3:17) because they had no idea that they were in need is a savior. They had clung to their own righteousness. If one were capable of having their own righteousness there is no need for the righteousness of Christ.
The last group that we will look at is more of an individual than a group. This individual is king Herod. King Herod definitely believed that Jesus was to become king because he was threatened by Him. Herod realized that a new legitimate king would demand obedience. The obedience that this new king would deserve would be the kind that would cause Herod to give control over to someone else. There is no room for two kings in a kingdom and Herod had decided that he was going to be king over his own life. This is why Herod went to great lengths to stop this new king from reigning. He even went as far as to kill all the male children in the area under two years old. People still today will go to great lengths to minimize the great King, but just like Herod, it is a complete waste of time.e This King is not just an earthly king reigning over Judea; He is the King of Kings that reigns over all of creation. There is coming a day when every knee shall bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, even those who will not do it willingly.