We could ask why they were so interested in a new born king of a peripheral desert country. Did they want to change their citizenship or maybe they wanted to apply for a dual citizenship? Or did they sense that this new born baby made heaven accessible for the mortals? The Wise Men, the scholars of their time, couldn’t realistically expect any enlightening discourse from the person they were searching for. He was still a baby. They couldn’t anticipate a philosophical dispute from him either. He was still a baby. But still they did set out for a long journey to set their eyes on the person with whom every mortal is invited to have a relationship of faith and love. The Wise Men wanted to have a relationship with Jesus and that’s what they were given. St Matthew tells us that ‘they were filled with delight’ when they reached Bethlehem after some delay when they got distracted from their path by the capital city of Jerusalem. Bethlehem is only a few kilometres from Jerusalem. The big capital city must have been to them an obvious place for a new royal to be born. The lights of Jerusalem must have dimed the brightness of the star.
My Dear Sisters and Brothers! Today’s solemnity is called Epiphany which means manifestation, revelation. Indeed Jesus revealed himself first to Mary and Joseph, then to the shepherds and the Wise Men. Even the detour the Wise Men made wasn’t a simple delay in their journey. By their inquiries in Jerusalem they announced the Good News of ‘the infant king of the Jews’ to King Herod and his capital city. Jesus was manifested to them too. The same Jesus is today also announced and manifested to us, so that we could have a saving relationship with him. Even here in the outback where the lights are shining brightly we need faith not only to see the signs pointing to him but to surrender to him what we have the most precious: our very life. The Wise Men did that that’s why ‘they returned to their own country by a different way.’ In their lives there was Jesus Chris now and they made a decision to treasure him more than the gold, myrrh and frankincense they had before. Jesus Christ was their new treasure. He was their Saviour.
He is also my treasure. He is also my Saviour. Is he yours?