Today we celebrate a special feast. Anybody know what it is called?? When Ellie read the Welcome for Mass she said “Today we celebrate the Epiphany of the Lord.”
What is an EPIPHANY??? Comes from a language called Greek. Anyone here speak Greek?? What is an Epiphany? It means something is revealed. Something hidden has been shown. It means to see a mystery, especially to see a revelation of God.
So in the Gospel we hear of “some wise men from the East”. Where in the East? We don’t know. I think it was maybe New Jersey, but someplace in the East. They come to Jerusalem looking for something. They were looking for “the child born to be King of the Jews.” They were looking for Jesus!.
These guys were WISE. They weren’t bozos nor dummies. They were wise enough to recognize in a simple baby the future King of the Jews, and more than that, the Savior of ALL the world. The Wise Men were not Jews, but they knew Jesus was very important not only for Jews, but for ALL people. They were wise enough to know this baby was VERY SPECIAL.
King Herod, on the other hand, was not wise. He was crafty. He was devious. He was sneaky. But he was not wise. King Herod told the Wise Men, “Go to Bethlehem and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, let me know. I want to go and worship him too.” Did King Herod want to worship the Christ child? No! He wanted to KILL him. Herod was greedy and anxious to hold on to his power.
King Herod killed a bunch of people in his own family who he thought might possibly be a threat to him. King Herod thought the Christ Child – destined to be King – was a threat to his own kingship. He wanted the Wise Men to tell him where the Christ Child was so Herod could go and kill him. That is why the Wise Men were warned in a dream not to go back to King Herod, but went home by another route.
Now the question for us is, ¿Are we wise? How about us? Are we more like the Wise Men, or more like King Herod??? Obviously, we want to be wise.
We also need to search for and find Jesus, just as those Wise Men from the East did so long ago. We need to search for our Epiphany, our vision or revelation of Jesus. Will we find Jesus in Prayer, or in the Sacraments like we are doing now, or in other people? Probably in all these and in other ways. We need to open our hearts for the Holy Spirit to reveal Jesus to us. That is true wisdom.
When the Wise Men found Jesus what did they do? The Gospel says “they kneeled down and worshiped him.” We can learn a lesson from the Wise Men. We too need to search for Jesus. And when we find Him, to do what they did, to kneel down and worship Him. Happy Epiphany!