Wednesday, 6 January 2016


The night the star appeared they knew it was a sign. They gazed at it in wonder and whispered to each other of the royal birth it announced. They went to their King and showed him with many charts and ancient texts that the new baby would become a King of particular importance, maybe even the greatest King of all.
               It was decided, they must go at once, all the astrologers, as emissaries, and with them the King would send members of the royal court, mighty warriors, magicians and an abundance of servants to cater and care for this magnificent party. They must also, the King announced take three gifts for the royal baby. They must be special and meaningful presents, fit for someone so important. The King sent away his wise men to consider what gifts should be sent.
“We must take something expensive, jewels maybe?”
               “Gold, gold for a King.”
               “Yes, you’re right. Gold will distinguish him as a ruler and someone to be trusted.”
               “Trusted? How so?”
               “Well, people will always be envious of someone who purchases gold from their earnings, and someone who wins gold will always be the subject of doubt. But if respected men, like ourselves, present a gift of gold, the receiver will gain respect and trust too. People the world over will know that we believe this is a King to be listened to.”
               “I agree, and we all accept gold will be the first gift, but what else shall we give him?”
               “How about a ring, to be his seal?”
               “The gold already tells everyone he is a King, but we know he will be much more than just a King. His realm will reach far beyond borders. He will be a spiritual leader too.”
               “A Priest, you mean.”
               “Of sorts, yes.”
               “What do you give to a Priest, though? They are not in the habit of collecting things.”
               “Incense. We are giving gifts that will show everyone who this child is and who he will be. A gift of Frankincense, say, will display his righteousness and priestly status.”

After this the wise men became stuck. Nothing else they suggested seemed fit as a gift for such a child. Several days passed with no brilliant idea coming to any of them. Instead they passed the time reading old scrolls, writings from a forgotten era, searching for clues about the new King. Then, one morning, one of the men called them together in excitement.
               “I know what the third gift should be. Last night I had a revelation; not just a dream, it was more vivid than anything I have experienced before. I can still see it clearly now. This new King is going to die, possibly before his reign even begins, but his death will be of even more importance than his life. I don’t fully understand what this means but I feel we should announce this in the same way we are announcing his role as King and Priest.”
               The others looked at him in bewilderment. “So what gift are you suggesting?”

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