Our second reading makes it clear that God made his universal plan of salvation ages ago, but revealed it in Jesus Christ. God’s plan, Epiphany, is that you and I are to become children of God! Our citizenship cannot be hijacked either by our sins or the disruptiveness of the devil. The light of God shone in darkness and the glory of God descended through the clouds, like the Shekinah of the Old Testament, have announced our citizenship as children of God. Even today, darkness still threatens the light of God among us – like Herod trying to kill the infant Jesus – but darkness will never dominate light! Lest we forget, there is a future glory which awaits us, so our offer of salvation has a future salvation, and that is where the wager is.
Many do not seem to ask how did the magi return home, since the star disappeared! We are told that the star stayed over the place where Jesus was born. The light of science led the magi to the Savior, not before they wondered to Herod because the star disappeared momentarily. The reappearance of the star was to lead the magi to their destination, a person, not a town, not a village. Now that they have seen the Savior, their scientific knowledge, their ability to read stars, became useless because there was no more star to read; yet, they needed to retrace their steps back to their home land. How did they find their way back home, what kind of knowledge led them home, then?
When Jesus took up his residency on earth, astrology could lead the magi to him. Today, Jesus lives in glory, where no technology can provide his coordinates. The challenge of today is the ability to hear and heed the alternative voice and science which God puts deep within us – the voice of a formed conscience. Our world needs the docility that leads to God, beyond our technological know-how. Technology, like the star of the magi, only leads to an earthly destination, only revelation and the voice of an angel could direct us to our final destination. God provided dreams and directives from angels for the magi to access their way home; not earthly home, but celestial home. Indeed, the direction of a star leads to Herods – obstacles on our way to God, but the voice of God reroutes away from Herods to God.
The proof that you and I are children of God is determined by the star and GPS that we follow, JESUS – the Way, the Truth and the Life. In our various sciences, that is, the jobs we do, God speaks to us and leads us to himself, just as astrologers (magi) followed the star to the Savior. The ability to see God through what we do; our attentiveness to God’s presence in all the circumstances of our lives; indeed, Emmanuel, God-with-us, is the sole guarantee of salvation, every other thing is just a sign and pointer to salvation. Yes, “Not the Star, Jesus is the Way”. The star has left the sky to dwell in you and me. Your life and my life must become the science that leads others to God; our knowledge of Scriptures must be our light, and only fidelity to God’s Word can lead us to God!
Assignment for the Week
By Fr. Ayodele Ayeni, a Spiritan