December 24, 2007 at 7:14 pm 3 comments

Provo, Utah

We spent several hours yesterday visiting the Grand Canyon.  Neither one of us had ever been there before, though we had each seen the Canyon from an airplane flying from Phoenix to Seattle.  It is an awe-inspiring sight, more than worth the extra 150 miles we had to drive.  We bought a new camera, for our Christmas gift to each other, so we had a lot of fun experimenting with our new little camera.  Maybe some pictures later in the week.

As we were driving out of the park, across the Hopi reservation, under the light of a totally full moon, we noticed something we had never seen before. Directly under the moon was a very bright star that was the only visible star in the sky.  Big full moon with a little star right under it-get the picture?  Has anyone ever seen this before?  Certainly you astronomer types will know what it was.  We watched it as we drove along, for at least a couple of hours, before other stars popped out and filled the sky.  (for an explanation of this phenomenon, see Sumijoti’s comments on the side bar.)

The first thing I thought of when I saw this star was the star that is part of the Christmas story as we know it today.  Of course, the so called Bethlehem star probably was not in view until some time after the birth of Jesus, but it’s appearing and the events that flowed from that star have fascinated both believer and non-believer for centuries.  (if you have time, this website has more on that star than you would ever want to know.  Find it here.

So what is the point of the star?

First, if this star reflects what is written Numbers 24:17-19, then it is a star of justice and has far reaching implications for all the non-Jewish people of our world for it speaks of salvation for all, Jew and Gentile alike and was not just for the Magi, who were first drawn to the Savior, by the star.

I see him, but not in the present time.
I perceive him, but far in the distant future.
A star will rise from Jacob;
a scepter will emerge from Israel.
It will crush the foreheads of Moab’s people,
cracking the skulls of the people of Sheth.

Edom will be taken over,
and Seir, its enemy, will be conquered,
while Israel continues on in triumph.

A ruler will rise in Jacob
who will destroy the survivors of Ir.
(Numbers 24:17-19)

If this text is the prophetic word that lies behind this “Christmas star” appearance, then it must be seen as an astronomical prediction of doom for those who are enemies of God. The baby born King of the Jews will reign over the whole earth and His rule brings with it judgement.

Second, this star is a “guiding” star, a star that leads the Magi from the East to Bethlehem, city of David, to Jesus the promised Messiah and Savior of His people and the Gentiles. Though it’s message may be one of judgement for some, the star is also a message of hope.  Whenever we have opportunity to talk about this star we should use it as an opening to speak about the hope that is in Jesus as Savior and Messiah.

The Christmas Story, as seen through this star, is more than just a way to get the Magi from the far east to the mid east.  This star is a prediction that one day all injustice will end and it is an invitation to all to follow Jesus as King.

O Star of wonder, star of night
Star with royal beauty bright
Westward leading, still proceeding
Guide us to Thy perfect light.

Not sure what that star was we saw last night in the Arizona desert, but it did lead me to worship the same King the Bethlehem star led the Magi to worship, the same star that is an invitation to all of us to come and worship, worship Christ the Newborn King.

Merry Christmas to all of you from Linda and me.


Entry filed under: Advent, Authority, Belief, Christianity, Church, Culture, Faith, Jesus, Kingdom, Revelation, The Father, Thoughts, Travel.

Our child-of-God selves… Gifts.

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. sumijoti  |  December 25, 2007 at 2:46 pm

    I get email updates from Nasa’s Spaceweather site. The star was Mars.

    This is what my email said:

    MOON AND MARS: Please don’t miss this: At sunset on Sunday, Dec. 23rd, the full Moon and Mars will rise in the east less than two degrees apart. So close together, the two brightest objects in the evening sky look absolutely dynamite. The display will be visible all night long, even from brightly lit cities, and requires no telescope to enjoy.

    We have so many trees around our property, and I was so busy getting ready for Christmas that I didn’t get to see it. I wish I had now.

  • 2. john delmont  |  December 25, 2007 at 1:32 pm

    Hi, we do not have an answer to your question but saw this star under the moon. Trying to find out more we did find your site…
    Thank you for sharing it. We saw it in Alabama 12/23/07 and under the same condition as you discribed.

  • 3. Maggie  |  December 24, 2007 at 10:08 pm

    Merry Christmas to you and Linda! Thank you for sharing.


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