Friday, December 30, 2016
The birth of Jesus is told in the Gospels with compelling power. The Christian community wanted the world to know that “the Word became flesh and lived among us.” John 1:14 The revelation of God’s love for humankind took place in flesh and blood.
The Christian community in the fourth century began to celebrate the birth of Jesus. The focus was on January 5 and 6. That celebration emphasized the Baptism of Jesus and the miracle of water being turned into wine at the wedding feast in Cana and the arrival of wise men from the East following the star that led them to Jesus, the Child of Promise.
The Epiphany feast triggered the celebration we know as Christmas. We celebrate Epiphany as the manifestation of Jesus Christ as the son of God and the savior for the whole world. Some call Epiphany, Three Kings Day. Were there just three Kings? We don’t know. The Bible mentions three gifts; gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Traditionally, it marks the physical manifestation to the Gentiles.
In 2017, we celebrate Epiphany on Sunday, January 8 by participating in the Sacrament of the Holy Communion.
Oh yes, there is that silly song, “The Twelve Days of Christmas.” It points to the celebration of Epiphany.
God bless you again in 2017.