House Church Talk - Re: Baptisms and Administrations: Star of Bethlehem

Bruce Woodford bwood4d at
Sun Apr 11 15:40:36 EDT 2004

Hi Ross,

You wrote:"Possibilities to one are probabilities to another! The text of 
Mat 2 does in fact indicate that the info originated with the Jews. The 
immediate reaction of Herod and his court to search the OT prophets for 
further information about the promised child-king indicates beyond a shadow 
of a doubt that it was from that source that the Magi had derived their 

Dear brother, you are allowing your "possibilities and probabilities" to 
blind you to the very truth of what scripture SAYS!

1.Herod had no idea where to go for such information! So he called the chief 
priests and scribes.
2.The chief priests and scribes did not even need to "search the OT prophets 
for further information"! They were well acquainted with the prophesies and 
simply quoted the correct information from memory!
3. If the OT prophecies such as Micah 5:1-3 HAD ACTUALLY BEEN THE SOURCE OF 
IS HE?"!!!
All they may have asked would have been, "Which way to Bethlehem?"

You wrote further:
"Ephesians 2:11-12 WEB

(11) Therefore remember that once you, the Gentiles in the flesh, who are
called "uncircumcision" by that which is called "circumcision," (in the
flesh, made by hands);

(12) that you were at that time separate from Christ, alienated from the
commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of the promise,
having no hope and without God in the world.

The above seems to plainly say that if you were not a part of the covenant
with Israel, you were indeed apart from God. It seems that the very words of
scripture are in direct contradiction to your assertion."

Dear brother, it is not alienation from Israel which makes a man "without 
hope, without God in the world" but rather being "separate from Christ"!  
Being separate from Christ is the reason why even many ISRAELITES are also 
"without hope and without God in the world"!

Have I understood you wrong, or do you actually believe that scripture 
teaches that there is one mediator between God and men, the nation of 

My Bible teaches that "There is one God, and one mediator between God and 
men , THE MAN, CHRIST JESUS"...  I Tim.2:5

After I'd written:"Do you know anything in the old testament scriptures that 
would have indicated that a special star was an indication of the coming of 
a Jewish king who was to be worshipped?? If there is such information which 
Jewish people could have shown the magi, you might have a case. But if not, 
must you not concede that God had revealed this to the magi apart from 
contact with Israelites?.....

You responded with the following scriptures:   (see my comments relative to 
each one)
Numbers 24:17 WEB

(17) I see him, but not now; I see him, but not near: There shall come forth
a star out of Jacob, A scepter shall rise out of Israel, Shall strike
through the corners of Moab, Break down all the sons of tumult.

Dear Ross, there is great difference bewteen prophecies which speak of 
Christ AS A STAR, and a visible object seen in the east by astronomers which 
BELONGS TO THE KING OF THE JEWS!  This verse of scripture, even if it had 
been accessible to the magi would not have told them anything about what 
they had seen in the east!

You wrote:"Two standard symbols in the ancient Near East:

a Star: (divinity)

Luke 1:78 WEB

(78) Because of the tender mercy of our God, Whereby the dawn from on high
will visit us,"

Brother, Luke 1:78 was not penned till many years after the magi's visit, 
and they certainly were not within earshot when Zacharias spoke these words!

You wrote:"2 Peter 1:19 WEB

(19) We have the more sure word of prophecy; whereunto you do well that you
take heed, as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns, and
the day star arises in your hearts:"

Again, Peter's words were not written till many years AFTER Christ's 
incarnation ansd spoke of something YET FUTURE WHEN HE WROTE IT!

You wrote:"Revelation 22:16 WEB

(16) I, Jesus, have sent my angel to testify these things to you for the
assemblies. I am the root and the offspring of David; the Bright and Morning

All of the above comments apply to this verse!  Christ IS the star referred 
to here, it is NOT a star that BELONGS TO HIM!  This is the testimony of the 
risen, glorified and ascended Christ, NOT an OT prophecy available to the 

You wrote:"a Sceptre: (Ruler/King)

Genesis 49:10 WEB

(10) The scepter will not depart from Judah, Nor the ruler's staff from
between his feet, Until he comes to whom it belongs. To him will the
obedience of the peoples be."

Brother, I totally agree with you that this a prophecy of Christ! But please 
explain what this text (even if they had been intimately acquainted with it) 
would have taught the magi about the "star which they saw in the east"???

You wrote:"cf. Isaiah 60:1-3 WEB

(1) Arise, shine; for your light is come, and the glory of Yahweh is risen
on you.

(2) For, behold, darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the
peoples; but Yahweh will arise on you, and his glory shall be seen on you.

(3) Nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your

Brother, again, this text very clearly speaks of a person.  Please explain, 
had you been one of the magi who saw his star in the east, what this 
scripture would have taught you?  Why would this verse have lead you to 
travel all the way 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"???

Please excuse my denseness, but for the life of me I cannot understand what 
you are saying. Can you explain for me how Gentile astronomers who were 
unaware of the Hebrew prophecies concerning the birthplace of Christ would 
have known what they knew FROM THE SCRIPTURES YOU HAVE CITED?

Further, how would you explain (if what you claim is true, that they had 
contact with Jewish people of the dispersion) why they would not have asked 
and received the answer to their question, "Where is He...?" from those same 
Jewish people???

Rather, the facts that (1) they did not know of the birthplace of Christ (a 
fact which any Jew could have told them) and (2) that they had to travel all 
the way to Jerusalem in order to ask their question seems to provide very 
clear evidence that they'd had NO CONTACT WITH JEWISH PEOPLE AT ALL IN THEIR 

Brother Ross, what do you honestly think the probabilities are that such men 
(if indeed there were Jewish people living in their own country) would have 
travelled so far to find the information they needed instead of asking their 
"next door neighbours"???

To be honest, I'm more baffled than ever with your insistence that the magi 
had indeed gotten all their revelation through Jewish people!!!

Also, even if Job was a contemporary of Abraham, as you claim.... how do you 
explain that Job expressed revealed truth on many points of which there 
seems no evidence that Abraham was even aware?

Your brother in Christ,

Free yourself from those irritating pop-up ads with MSn Premium. Get 2months 

House Church Talk is sponsored by the House Church Network.

House Church Talk has been renamed. These discussions, via the web, now occur at the Radically Christian Cafe.