Matthew also wants us to see the contrast, the choice.
“After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod” (Matthew 2:1).
Real events. Real people. Real life.
Another king. A small provincial ruler. A mad-man. Representative of the Roman Empire. Herod.
“Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, ‘Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews?’” (Matthew 2:1-2).
Herod cannot accept the idea of another king and so begins his murderous plans.
Christmas is about a King. God’s King. Come to announce His Kingdom.
God’s Kingdom or the world’s kingdom?
God’s values or the world’s values?
God’s King or the world’s king?
“What child is this who, laid to rest
On Mary’s lap is sleeping?
Whom Angels greet with anthems sweet,
While shepherds watch are keeping?
This, this is Christ the King,
Whom shepherds guard and Angels sing;
Haste, haste, to bring Him laud,
The Babe, the Son of Mary.”
(What Child Is This. Words by William Chatterton Dix, c. 1865).