Matthew 2:11, “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 chapter two records for us the account of the “wise men” who came from the East to see and worship Jesus. Our study verse teaches us that they arrived at the “house” and “saw the young child and Mary his mother.” Two questions: Where was this house? And have you ever considered the blessings associated with this house?
The first question is answered by comparing Matthew and Luke. In Luke chapter two, we read about the virgin birth of the Lord; Him being circumcised at eight days old according to the law (Luke 2:21); and Mary fulfilling her time of purification according to the law (Luke 2:21; see Leviticus 12:1-4), which was 40 days. Her days being fulfilled, Mary brought an offering to the priest according to the law. Joseph and Mary were poor, and used the Lord’s provision for the poor (two turtledoves or two pigeons). After this was accomplished, we read in Luke 2:39, “And when they had performed all things according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their own city Nazareth.” The “house” was in Nazareth.
The second question is one that a lifetime of preaching would not be sufficient to answer. But examining and studying these events will allow us, who are but dust by nature, to enjoy a bounty of rich blessings in knowledge and truth. If the reader would allow, I would like to compare the house of Matthew 2:11 to the blessings we may experience at the Church house if the Lord blessed us with His presence.
(1) Let us consider those who came to the house. The “wise men” who came from the East, were not satisfied to stay in Jerusalem or Bethlehem, but longed to come where the Lord was. When we converse with others about an interest in the Church, it’s important to remember that the Lord’s manifest presence is the key and number one thing we should seek. If we desire people to “come and see,” we should humbly pray and live in obedience to the One Who is the Head of the House. Those who are seeking fellowship with Jesus, will not be satisfied with the world’s ideas, and how precious it is to see those who long for Him to find Him in the House of the Lord.
(2) Let us consider the “exceeding great joy” which was experienced by the “wise men.” (Matthew 2:10). After a long and, I’m sure a tiring journey, the men arrived at the house where Jesus was. They rejoiced with exceeding great joy when they saw the star that led them to this house. That joy did not end when they arrived, but continued when they finally saw the One they sought. When reading this verse, I cannot help but think back on my experience in coming to the Lord’s Church. What joy I had when the Lord, through the gospel and His word (the Bible) led me to the house where the Church met. And the joy of the journey only became sweeter when I was blessed to arrive and see the Lord in the truth and fellowship of His grace.
(3) Let us consider the providential blessings of the Lord being in the house. When the “wise men” arrived, they had gifts. Joseph and Mary had a long journey in their near future. The travel to Egypt was one of price, and the Lord blessed them with the gifts of “gold, and frankincense, and myrrh” to cover all the costs. These providential blessings were enjoyed by those in the house, because the Lord was in the house. Oh how these thoughts stir my mind to think back on the Lord’s rich blessings to those who abide in His house. Brothers and Sisters in Christ, if we obey the Lord, there is no guarantee that we will receive an abundance of blessings, but just being close to Him gives us so much more than the world can afford.
(4) Let us consider the wisdom and the spiritual guide they enjoyed because the Lord was in the house. Joseph and Mary needed help. Herod would seek to kill Jesus. How would they know about the dangers ahead? Where do they go for safety? Matthew 2:13, “And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth 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.”
Brothers and Sisters in Christ, I trust the message is clear. We Need the Lord’s presence. As a member of the Church, I understand this more than ever, without Him “we can do nothing” (John 15:5). In a world where everyone is seemingly offended by something or somebody, let us labour to never offend the Lord that He would always be pleased to dwell in the house. Just as Mephibosheth understood the importance for him to be near and close to David the King of Israel in 2 Samuel 19:30, “my lord the king is come again in peace unto his own house,” let us long for the manifest presence of the Lord at the Church house where we meet.