How Christ’s 1st Advent May Parallel His 2nd

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Something the Lord has impressed upon my heart:

Matthew 2 : 1 -3 Reads,

“Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, [a]wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, 2 saying, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him.” 3 When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. 4 And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born.”

Please note that God did not lead the wisemen directly to Bethlehem, but instead they were led to Jerusalem, the capital of Israel, the city center of God’s chosen people.

Verse 3 says, “When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.”

Wonder what the king, the priests and all the theologians of the day were doing when the wisemen from the east blindsided them by showing up in Jerusalem and unexpectedly announcing the arrival of the new born King?

1. The news of the new-born King took king Herod and all of Jerusalem by complete surprise.

2. It wasn’t anyone among the Jews but men from a gentile nation who came and “troubled” or ALERTED the king and everyone else in Jerusalem.

What does this tell us?

God’s own people-the Adventists of its time were ignorant of the prophetic fulfillment AS IT WAS HAPPENING.

Matthew 2 Verse 4, 5: “And when he had gathered ALL THE CHIEF PRIESTS AND SCRIBES of the people together, he DEMANDED of them where Christ should be born. 5 And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea:”

So the King summons all the chief priests and the scribes and they tell the king WHERE the Messiah would be born-in Bethlehem.

Verse 8: And he SENT THEM [wisemen] to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.

Question: Who directed the wise men where to go? It was actually Herod the king, AFTER having being told by the chief priests and the scribes.

So not unlike the wise men, there are many, who are “not of this fold,” the “gentiles” or the “non-Adventists” of the world, who have faithfully followed the STAR (the light of truth) and are on a journey to meet the soon coming Lord. As wisemen were led by the “star” to Jerusalem, so too these faithful followers are also being led into a body of believers, even into “God’s remnant church”.

Again, not unlike the king, the chief priests and the scribes; the (Seventh-day) Adventists, with its unique understanding of the prophecy can provide the more clear and precise direction as to how these “non-Adventists” may further their walk and rightly anticipate the ensuing events as they move even closer towards that fateful day-Christ’s 2nd coming.

But here’s the most astounding blunder to the whole story. While they knew the prophecy, studied it more urgently due to Herod’s prompting and subsequently even directed the wisemen where to go and yet they stood behind and watched while the wisemen marched on to their destination. Wow!

While the Jews had the knowledge, they themselves did not follow the light or the star along with their visitors from the East, of whom they just taught where to go. By the way, the scrolls that they were studying were written in their own native tongue.

Not only that, if you follow the story, it gets even worst. The leader of God’s own chosen nation (Herod), having learned the whereabouts of Jesus, by none other than his own religious leaders, the nations leading scholars on Bible prophecy; ends up going on a killing spree of innocent children and even forced Jesus, their long awaited Messiah, to flee from the very nation God had chosen, even to a godless, heathen nation, Egypt.

Listen to what Paul says of Isralites in Romans 9:3-5:

“. . . my kinsmen according to the flesh: 4 Who are Israelites; to whom pertaineth the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law, and the service of God, and the promises; 5 Whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, …”

Israel was a nation that was hand picked by God, a nation that began with their faithful patriarch Abraham then Jacob, who after struggling with an angel in the night was given the name, “Israel” which means “God prevails”; the nation that enjoyed its glory days during the reign of David and Solomon; a nation which had the privilege of having the Sacred Oracles of God delivered to them personally by God Himself. And for generations have had the privilege of God fearing prophets showing them and leading them in the ways of God and prophesying of the coming of the Messiah. A nation, fortunate enough, to have the Savior of the world to be born in their own city, the city of David; and yet something got lost in translation. These people were not only oblivious to their own Savior, their prophetic insight, not rightly applied, was actually used to help identify the very city in trying to kill and destroy Jesus, their Messiah.

In the book, Desire of Ages p. 47, Ellen White wrote:

“Had the leaders in Israel been true to their trust, they might have shared the joy of heralding the birth of Jesus. But now they are passed by. God declares, “I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground.” “Unto the upright there ariseth light in the darkness.” Isaiah 44:3; Psalm 112:4. To those who are seeking for light, and who accept it with gladness, the bright rays from the throne of God will shine.”

What a sad portrait of God’s own people! Instead of participating in this glorious event, the blessings have been given over to someone else, in this case, to the wisemen.

How could they have squandered such a blessing?

Could this be the scenario that will repeat itself in the near future?

Lord help us!

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