Space Day 5 Space To Know Him: Digging Deeper

Digging Deeper Days...are a pretty big deal at GT!

We search God's Word together, ask questions as we read, dig around to find the original intentions at the time of writing, and then make some applications to our everyday lives.
Along the way, we hope you'll pick up some new tools to study Scripture and you'll see truth in a new and accessible way!
Dig In!

The Passage

Fridays are 2-for-1! Check out the other Journey Post, Space To Know Him!

Matthew 2:1-12 English Standard Version (ESV)

Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet:

“‘And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for from you shall come a ruler
who will shepherd my people Israel.’”

Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star had appeared. And he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.” After listening to the king, they went on their way. And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. 11 And going into the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. 12 And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.

The Questions

1) What do we know for sure about the Wise Men?

2) Why did the Wise Men come to Jerusalem?

3) Why is Jesus referred to as a shepherd in the quote from Micah 5:2?

The Findings for Intention

1) What do we know for sure about the Wise Men?
Despite general folklore, the Bible doesn’t tell us how many magi visited Christ, what their names were, or even that they visited Jesus right after He was born. The account Matthew gives describes a “child” and a “house”, which implies that Jesus was actually older. He was probably around 2 years of age considering that Herod’s decree for murdering the boys in Bethlehem was for age 2 and under. Also, in verse 2, the wise men ask King Herod for the one who “has been born”, implying that even they knew He would have already been born. For all that we don’t know about the magi, Matthew’s focal point was their intentional worship.

2) Why did the Wise Men come to Jerusalem?
Jerusalem was the location of the Jewish temple as well as the king’s palace. It was the head of government and religion and it makes sense that a new King would be born in the city of royalty.

3) Why is Jesus referred to as a shepherd in the quote from Micah 5:2?
In Old Testament times, God designed that the priests of the temple were to “shepherd” His people. He knew that the people needed to be cared for physically and spiritually. He wanted His flock to know the truth about Him. His shepherds were supposed to model God’s heart of love and truth, but instead they used their position and power to exploit the people. They abandoned their position as shepherd and instead turned the people away from the genuine truth about God. This broke God’s heart and through various prophets like Micah, Isaiah, and Ezekiel, God foretold of a coming king, David, who would demonstrate God’s shepherd heart for His people. David pointed forward to Jesus as the ultimate Good Shepherd. Jesus’s life on earth and His sacrifice, points even farther ahead to when He returns as our literally present shepherd who will guide us in truth and wipe away every tear and sorrow (Rev 7:17).

The Everyday Application

1) How can knowing more about the Wise Men impact my everyday life?
In our western culture, we like to get caught up in details that seem to be so important, but we easily forget to step back and see the big picture. We lose sight of our main goal and purpose. For the wise men, their purpose was laser-focused on one thing: worship. In verse 10, Matthew says the wise men, “rejoiced exceedingly with great joy” when they finally saw Jesus. Worshipping Him was their satisfaction. Is it ours? Or are we caught up in details?

2) What does Jesus’s birthplace tell us about Him?
Jesus was born in obscure little Bethlehem, hidden in the shadow of powerful Jerusalem. Despite the prophecy of Micah, all eyes were still on Jerusalem for the new King. The Jews wanted a political king with plenty of clout to destroy the Romans and free them from cruel treatment. But the wisdom of God always seems foolish in the eyes of the world and His birth was no exception. God’s plan for redemption was much bigger than a few Jews being freed from Herod’s reign, His heart was to free humanity from the tyranny of sin!

3) How can I see Jesus as my shepherd?
The imagery of the Good Shepherd and His flock is a common one in Scripture (see also John 10) and it’s rich with depth and significance for us in our everyday lives. Read through Ezekiel 34 and write down every difference you can find between the shepherds who were self-focused and Yahweh as Shepherd. Note also the benefits of being cared for by the shepherd who loves His flock. It will take some of your time, yes, but remember, “create space to know Him” and watch for the gifts that will overflow as a result!

Don’t miss today’s other Journey Study, Space To Know Him!
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I Can Do That!

1) Take this passage (or any other passage).
2) Read through it (always more than a verse or two).
3) Write down your questions as you think of them.
4) Ask specific culture related questions and be ready to dig around for your answers. Google them, use, or look them up in a study Bible and read the footnotes (click on the little letters next to a word and it will show you other related verses!). (
5) Check your applications with other trusted Christians that you are in community with and embrace the fullness of God in your everyday!

The Community!

Thanks for joining us today as we journeyed into Space Week One!
Don’t miss out on the discussion – we’d love to hear your thoughts!

The Tools!

We love getting help while we study and is one of many excellent resources.  Just type in the verse you’re looking at and Boom! It’s right in front of you in English and Hebrew (Old Testament) or Greek (New Testament), which are the original languages the Bible was written in.

Want to know more about a specific word in a verse? Click on “Strong’s Interlinear Bible” then click the word you’d like to study. Find super awesome stuff like “origin”, “definition”, and even all the different ways that single word has been translated into English! If you want to be geeky, you can even click the word and hear its original pronunciation – That Is Awesome!

Want to get more background on a word or phrasing or passage? Click “Study Tools”, then pick a few commentaries to read their scholarly approach, keeping in mind that just because a commentary says it, doesn’t mean it’s true. (just like the internet :-))

The Why!

Finding the original meaning is a huge deal when we study Scripture and can make all the difference in our understanding as we apply God’s truths to our everyday lives.

In our modern-day relationships, we want people to understand our original intention as we communicate; how much more so between God and humanity?!

Here’s a little bit more on why we take Digging Deeper so seriously.

Embracing God’s fullness in our lives is rooted in scripture and memorizing His word is vital to our continued growth and depth with Jesus.
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Looking for other journeys from this theme?
See all past studies in Space!