For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:6)
Today Anika came home from school with a picture of the Magi, coming to adore the infant Jesus. It struck me as odd for her to bring this image home to colour in, until I remembered that this past weekend, on the 6th, many people around the world celebrated Epiphany, the revelation of Christ to the Gentiles through the visit of the Magi. And in the days ahead, Epiphany is marked by several biblical accounts and themes in the life of Jesus, all speaking to the revelation of God, incarnate, in Jesus Christ. As I read this morning in my devotional, "The epiphany of Epiphany is that this is no mere teacher or prophet - this is the Son of God, the Messiah".
This truly is one of my favourite aspects of the Christmas season, that God, in his merciful plan, would reveal his Son to Gentiles so soon. In fact, some of the first visitors to witness Immanuel, God with us, were Gentiles from the east! I appreciate this missional aspect of Epiphany. Jesus, the light of the world, who encourages us to bring light into the darkness of this world, beckoned the Magi by the great light of his star to signal the ultimate, universal rescue plan - that through this one, perfect human, the nations are able to be in relationship with a holy God.
In turn, Epiphany calls us to live as lights, reflecting the light of Christ, announcing to those around us that He's here! He came! The redeemer has come to rescue us from the darkness. It is a fitting and perfect reminder to live missionally as we begin the new year.