The Wise Men
Gospel Art Picture Kit
Matthew 2:1–12; 3 Nephi 1:21
Behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him. Matthew 2:1–2
When Jesus was born in Bethlehem, wise men in the east saw a new star in the sky. They knew this star meant the Messiah had been born, so they traveled to Jerusalem. (See Matthew 2:1.) Hoping to find and worship the young child, the wise men asked, “Where is he that is born King of the Jews?” (Matthew 2:2; see also 3 Nephi 1:21; Joseph Smith Translation, Matthew 3:2).
King Herod ruled at that time, and when he heard of the wise men’s question, he was disturbed because he didn’t like the suggestion that there was another king of the Jews. He called the chief priests and scribes together and asked them where Christ was to be born. (See Matthew 2:3–4.) They answered that a prophet had written that Christ would be born “in Bethlehem of Judaea” (Matthew 2:5).
Herod sent for the wise men and asked them about the star they had followed (see Matthew 2:7). He then sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “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” (Matthew 2:8).
The star led the wise men to young Jesus, “and when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh” (Matthew 2:11; see also Matthew 2:9–10).
Because the wise men had received a warning from Heavenly Father in a dream, they did not return to Herod but went by another way to their homeland. Herod did not want to worship Jesus; he intended to kill Him. (See Matthew 2:12–13.)
When Jesus was born, wise men from the east saw a new star in the sky. They knew this was a sign of the Messiah’s birth. The wise men traveled to Jerusalem, hoping to find and worship the young child. King Herod was not happy to hear of a new king and told the travelers to bring him word when they found the child. The star led the wise men to young Jesus, and they fell down to worship Him and offered precious gifts. God warned the wise men in a dream that they should not report to King Herod, so they returned to their country another way.
Artist, Minerva Kohlhepp Teichert
Painting courtesy of Brigham Young University Museum Collection.
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