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Thread: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

  1. #1
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    So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    Ancient wise men lived in an age of much astrology. After all, that was what the heathen religions of the time were basically about—worship of the sun, moon, stars, and the like. In Mt. 2 it says they came from the East (China??) - "After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi[a] from the east came to Jerusalem 2 and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” Does that not sound like the study of Astrology for making predictions? What does God say about Astrologers?

    Isaiah 47:13-14

    All the counsel you have received has only worn you out!
    Let your astrologers come forward,
    those stargazers who make predictions month by month,
    let them save you from what is coming upon you.
    14 Surely they are like stubble;
    the fire will burn them up.
    They cannot even save themselves
    from the power of the flame.
    These are not coals for warmth;
    this is not a fire to sit by.

  2. #2

    Re: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    Yes, astrologers. Probably from Persia. Wise men of the east were counselors and advisers to kings, giving direction to them based on the mysteries revealed in the heavens (ie. motion of planets with respect to background stars/constellations). The *star* was most likely Jupiter. All stars rise, but planets rise with respect to the background stars, and the sun. The "rising" star was probably Jupiter as it appeared first as a morning star in close conjunction with Venus, giving the wisemen a clue that something was up in the heavens. Then, probably a series of occultations over many months occurred. Jupiter continued to rise across the sky, progressing over the weeks through the constellation Leo, where it came into close proximity with the bright star in Leo called Regulus. Interestingly, Jupiter then began its retrograde motion shortly thereafter, bringing Jupiter back to Regulus a second time, and then a third time as Jupiter moved forward again across the sky. The star *regulus* in the constellation Leo. Regulus was associated with kings...hence its Roman prefix *Reg*. It was associated with kings not only by Romans but other ancients as well. Jupiter, or Zeus (Roman and Greek) was also known as the king star/wanderer (planet), for Zeus/Jupiter was the king of the gods. This king star passed through the constellation Leo...the lion...Judah's natal sign, and there came into conjunction with Regulus/King. Hence, "We have come to see the one born king of the Jews, for we saw his star rising." The wisemen's joy, upon seeing the star after leaving their meeting with Herod was probably in response to what Jupiter did that particular and unique evening. The king planet came into close proximity with Venus again, this time as an evening star. Their proximity to each other was so close as to be no distance between them. Jupiter and Venus had fused to form one glorious star on that one night, confirming to these ancient astrologers that they had indeed come to the right place. But this no doubt took place near two years after Christ's birth. The wisemen were probably not at the manger scene, but the heavens had heralded to them a special king had been born. So they travelled to the East to find him. They most certainly were astrologers.

  3. #3
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    Re: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    Persia was my other guess. So, were these astrologers that we sing Christmas Carols about men of God? I have to assume so, since God warned them in a dream not to go back to Herod. Regardless, the wise men's first visit to Herod revealed the birth place of Christ, which resulted is the mass murder of every newborn boy in Bethlehem.

  4. #4

    Re: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    I guess you would call them seekers. They were looking to the heavens to find/know the mystery behind the heavens. All who seek will find...the first instance in the gospel where the pagan Gentiles are seeking, and God is finding them.

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    Re: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    Quote Originally Posted by WSGAC View Post
    I guess you would call them seekers. They were looking to the heavens to find/know the mystery behind the heavens. All who seek will find...the first instance in the gospel where the pagan Gentiles are seeking, and God is finding them.
    Certainly one way to look at it. How do you reconcile that with Isaiah 47: 13-14?

  6. #6

    Re: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    What is there to reconcile? That God is against astrology? I think He is, but on this occasioin the heavens were indeed declaring the glory of God, and the Gentiles were the ones to see it first, even though they did not yet know Israel's God.

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    Re: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    Quote Originally Posted by WSGAC View Post
    What is there to reconcile? That God is against astrology? I think He is, but on this occasioin the heavens were indeed declaring the glory of God, and the Gentiles were the ones to see it first, even though they did not yet know Israel's God.
    Unless I'm reading the text wrong, the wise men did know of Israel's God, otherwise why bow down and worship him?

    Mt. 2: 10-11 "When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. 11 On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh."

    They must have known something that could have only been revealed by God. God, who hates astrologers (I can cite many other verses besides Isaiah 47) apparently found favor with these particular astrologers.

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    Re: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    I offer that what has been brought out in this thread speaks not about 'Astrology', but 'Astronomy'.
    My favorite scripture: Malachi 3:16

    "Then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another: and the LORD hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon his name!" (Every time we speak of the Lord, or even THINK of him--its written down in a book of remembrance!)

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    Re: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    Quote Originally Posted by Diggindeeper View Post
    I offer that what has been brought out in this thread speaks not about 'Astrology', but 'Astronomy'.
    yeah, I thought about that. Might be so.

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    Re: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    Alright here we go with a totally different view on the wise men.............. The wise men came from the east. Does this really mean east as from a point on earth?? They could have been like the angels in Sodom which appeared as men with a deeper understanding as east representing Godly. I see these wise men are three of the four beasts/kings in God's kingdom with Christ being the fourth upon the earth.

    The four beasts / four kings in God's kingdom

    Re 4:6 And before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto crystal: and in the midst of the throne, and round about the throne, were four beasts full of eyes before and behind.
    Re 4:7 And the first beast was like a lion, and the second beast like a calf, and the third beast had a face as a man, and the fourth beast was like a flying eagle.
    Re 4:8 And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.

    Now I use Dan as a reference knowing that this describes Satan's kingdom which however is a counterfeit.

    Da 7:17 These great beasts, which are four, are four kings, which shall arise out of the earth.

    Note God and Satan's counterfeit kingdom each have four beasts and one which was, and is, and is to come......

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    Re: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    Now that's an interesting twist. I suppose that too has merit.

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    Re: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    No, that's too much speculation..........
    My favorite scripture: Malachi 3:16

    "Then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another: and the LORD hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon his name!" (Every time we speak of the Lord, or even THINK of him--its written down in a book of remembrance!)

  13. #13

    Re: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    A friend sent this to me awhile back... maybe a bit of speculation, too:


    We Three Kings of Orient Are

    A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

    After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea during the time of King Herod, Magi came from the East to Jerusalem and asked ďWhere is the one who has been born King of the Jews? We saw His star in the East and have come to worship Him.Ē (Matt 2:1-2)

    Letís Begin At The Beginning

    This story actually began just over 600 years earlier during the life of Daniel the Prophet. As a teenager Daniel, a prince of Israel, was taken hostage by the King of Babylon to insure that the provisions of a peace treaty between Israel and Babylon would be obeyed. But Israelís kings repeatedly violated the treaty and so the Babylonians burned Jerusalem and Solomonís Temple to the ground and took all the Jews captive to Babylon where they remained for 70 years. Toward the end of this 70 year period, Daniel, now an old man, was praying to God, asking for the release of His people. While praying he was visited by the Angel Gabriel and given a message that has become the single most important piece of prophetic scripture in the entire Bible. This message is contained in Daniel 9:24-27. It revealed the time of the Messiahís coming, His subsequent death and the destruction of Jerusalem, and an overview of the events leading up to the End of the Age.

    Daniel had become the head of a group of royal advisors who were both wise and spiritual. According to tradition he shared Gabrielís message with them and admonished them to incorporate it into their wisdom, to be handed down from generation to generation until the time of Messiahís birth. (He also entrusted them with the wealth he had acquired a lifetime of service to several kings to be delivered to the Messiah upon his birth.) Over the following 500 years this group became a powerful priesthood that was so influential in the affairs of the kingdom (now called Parthia) that no king could reign without their approval. Central to their philosophy was the belief handed down to them over the centuries that one day soon God would send One who would be born to the throne putting to an end all the intrigue that usually accompanied the appointment of a king. The general time of the coming of this King was known to them from Danielís teaching as was the sign they would be given. A special star would appear in the sky, marking His arrival (Numbers 24:17).

    The Sign Of The Star

    When the star appeared, a delegation of this Parthian priesthood, known as the Magi, set out for Jerusalem. There were undoubtedly more than three of them since dignitaries of the day traveled in a great entourage both for protection and as a sign of their importance. Plus in this case they were traveling through enemy territory since a few years earlier Parthia had repelled a Roman invasion and the Romans were now entrenched in Israel. No wonder Herod and indeed all Jerusalem were disturbed by their arrival (Matt 2:3). Keep in mind Herod was not even Jewish. He was an Idumean (Jordanian) who had been appointed by the Roman Senate, and now some powerful foreign king makers were coming to claim that there was one who was born to be King of the Jews. Surely this natural born king would have a more powerful claim to the throne than a foreign appointee. Imagine Herodís fear then they came asking, ďWhere is the one who has been born King of the Jews?Ē

    Will The Real King Please Stand Up?

    When Herod summoned the Jewish scholars for information regarding this king, they concluded from Micah 5:2 that the Messiah would come from Bethlehem. Herod then met secretly with the Magi and determined the time when the star had first appeared. He sent them to Bethlehem in search of the child, hoping through them to learn of His whereabouts himself (Matt. 2:4-8). Guided by the star the Magi came to the house where Jesus and Mary and Joseph were staying. They presented Him with three gifts rich in symbolism and worshipped Him there. The gold they gave Him signified royalty and identified Him as a King, the frankincense spoke of His Priesthood, and the myrrh was a prophecy of His death since myrrh was known primarily as an embalming spice. These 3 gifts represented the 3 offices of the Messiah, Prophet, Priest and King and were from the treasure Daniel had left to Him. In the millennium, the Messiah will once again be given gifts, but this time only 2; gold and frankincense (Isa. 60:6). No more death.

    The Magi, being warned in a dream, did not reveal the childís location to Herod and returned home by a different route (Matt 2:9-12). When Herod realized heíd been ignored, he was furious and gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem who were 2 years old and younger in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi. But Joseph had also been warned of Herodís anger and took his family into Egypt, remaining there until Herod died (Matt 2:13-16). From this we can conclude that the Magi didnít arrive in Bethlehem on the night Jesus was born. They probably set out on their journey when the star first appeared, indicating the Lordís birth. Allowing time to confirm the sign of the star, make preparations to leave and then travel nearly 800 miles they could have arrived in Jerusalem as much as a year or two later. Hence the execution of all the boys in Bethlehem 2 years old and younger.

    Listen To What Isnít Said

    Sometimes what isnít said in Scripture is as revealing as what is. Even after reading the prophecy in Micah 5:2 and receiving the dual confirmation of the star and the arrival of the Magi, neither Herod nor the Jewish spiritual and political leaders went to Bethlehem themselves. We can understand Herodís response; he wasnít even Jewish and feared the discovery of a rival claim to the throne. But Israel had waited for centuries for the Messiah, and these leaders had the same knowledge as the Magi. The prophecies were written in their own Scriptures, and were being fulfilled right before their eyes. The problem was that the Jewish leadership had long before departed from a literal interpretation of Scripture, and the ruling Sadducean party had rejected predictive prophecy as unreliable and not meant for their time. Having deemed it irrelevant they ignored it and missed the event they had longed for. The spiritual and political leaders of our generation have made the very same mistake, only this time itís for keeps; thereís no prophecy of a 3rd coming. So once again itís proven true: the only thing we learn from history is that we learn nothing from history.

    And now you know the adult version.

    http://gracethrufaith.com/childrens-...of-orient-are/

    [and, same author]

    "The Bible doesnít come right out and say this, but according to tradition Daniel founded the group that came to be known as the Magi after receiving the 70 weeks prophecy from Gabriel (Daniel 9:24-27)."

  14. #14
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    Re: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    Quote Originally Posted by Diggindeeper View Post
    No, that's too much speculation..........
    Is it? How about Daniel 9:24-27?

    Seventy Weeks and the Messiah

    24 “Seventy [a]weeks have been decreed for your people and your holy city, to [b]finish the transgression, to [c]make an end of sin, to make atonement for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and [d]prophecy and to anoint the most holy place. 25 So you are to know and discern that from the issuing of a [e]decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until [f]Messiah the Prince there will be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks; it will be built again, with [g]plaza and moat, even in times of distress. 26 Then after the sixty-two weeks the [h]Messiah will be cut off and have [i]nothing, and the people of the prince who is to come will destroy the city and the sanctuary. And [j]its end will come with a flood; even to the end [k]there will be war; desolations are determined. 27 And he will make a firm covenant with the many for one week, but in the middle of the week he will put a stop to sacrifice and grain offering; and on the wing of [l]abominations will come one who [m]makes desolate, even until a complete destruction, one that is decreed, is poured out on the one who [n]makes desolate.”

    EDIT: I didn't realize the above poster already addressed Daniel 9. He beat me to the punch!

  15. #15

    Re: So who were the wise men and where did they come from?

    Quote Originally Posted by Diggindeeper View Post
    I offer that what has been brought out in this thread speaks not about 'Astrology', but 'Astronomy'.
    Astronomy is a field of science, a modern thing. Ancient star gazers were astrologers. "We saw his star rising..." is not a statement an astronomer would make. The magi from the east were interested in the mysteries of the planetoi (wanderers; planets). What were these heavenly bodies trying to tell us? What mysteries were they revealing? These are the questions astrologers ask, and not astronomers.

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