Epiphany: The Global and Exclusive Gospel

Passage:Matthew 2:1-12

Preacher: Ben Phillips

Series: The End of the Beginning: Advent Christmas & Epiphany

Category: Church Seasons

On January 6th we celebrate the Epiphany, that is, when the magi visited baby Jesus in Bethlehem. Our texts today are Mathew 2:1-12, the actual story of the wise men's visitation, as well as Isaiah 60:1-6 and Ephesians 3:1-12. Matthew is the only Gospel which includes the event of the wise men's visitation, so what exactly was Matthew trying to tell us through it? The answer in large part is found in the Isaiah 60 passage, where visiting kings bring gifts to the true king of Israel, but these are Gentile kings, from foreign lands, lands of darkness. The drawing of the magi to Bethlehem is a prefiguring of what Paul calls "the mystery of Christ". In today's sermon we will explore these rich and profound ideas, and come to realize both the global or universal scope of God's plan of salvation, but also come to grips with its exclusiveness, that is to say, the uniqueness of Christ and how salvation is found in him and him alone. The Church must always hold these two Gospel truths in tension.