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Tuesday, January 6, 2015

HAPPY EPIPHANY!

Those of you who have a background in liturgical Christian churches know that today, January 6, is "Epiphany"...the 12th day of Christmas...in Koine Greek, it's ἐπιφάνεια, epiphaneia, or "manifestation" or "striking appearance"...

It's the day of the Theophany, which in Ancient Greek is (ἡ) Θεοφάνεια, Theophaneia, meaning "vision of God"...it's a Christian feast day that celebrates the revelation of God as a human being in Jesus Christ...in Western Christianity, the feast commemorates principally (but not solely) the visit of the Magi to the Christ child, and thus Jesus' physical manifestation to the Gentiles...

The Magi (or three Wise Men), who are celebrated on this day, may be my favorite Bible characters...they were persian magician/astrologers who, as far as we know, knew nothing of the Scriptures predicting the birth of a Jewish Messiah, and still found the Christ...they certainly didn't know that the Prophet Micah had said that He would be born in Bethlehem...

Now pertaining to Jesus – being born within [the town ofBethlehem, of the Judean [district], during the days of Herod the king – note and consider this: Great ones (magi: from the Persian magus = great ones, who were often Persian priests; wise men; scholars; astrologers; royal advisors; or: magicians) from eastern regions birthed their presence into Jerusalem[Hebrew: City or Occupation of Peace and Wholeness]. They kept on saying, "Where is He being the one born 'King of the Judeans'? You see, we saw His star (or: luminous heavenly body; meteor; flame of light) in [itsrising (or: within the East, the place of rising; or: we, [being] in the east, saw His star), and we come (or: came) to do obeisance (or: to kiss toward, fall down and give reverence, worship and pay homage) to Him."

(Matthew 2:1, 2 - Jonathan Mitchell New Testament)

...somehow they knew about Him by charting the stars, or the zodiac, and were so excited about His birth that they travelled to a foreign country just to worship Him...not to convert to Judaism...not to learn about the Hebrew Scriptures...certainly not to become  "Christians", because that concept didn't even exist yet...these three mysterious men transcended religious and national boundaries, and were not only enlightened in the magical arts, they were also global visionaries...they intuitively recognized who Jesus was as a baby in the same way that the pagan Roman Centurian recognized Him as an adult...


Now when the man Jesus was born as a baby in Bethlehem of Judea during the reign of Herod the king, astrologers from the East came to Jerusalem to inquire about Him. These astrologers, or “Magi” originated from a religious caste among the Persians who were devoted to divination (or the practice of the magic arts) and to the interpretation of dreams. They came from Southern Arabia, where they had long maintained a tradition of Israelite Messianic expectation that had survived in the region since the days of the Queen of Sheba; and this tradition survived alongside their practice of astrology. When they came to Jerusalem, they began to ask around, “Where is He Who has been born King of the Jews? For we have charted His star in the East through our understanding of the zodiac and have come to worship Him.”

(Matthew 2:1, 2 - Matthew In The Now


"Epiphany" is also known as "The Day of the Lights"...the dictionary defines an epiphany as: 


"a sudden, intuitive perception of or insight into the reality or essential meaning of something, usually initiated by some simple,  homely, or commonplace occurrence or experience"...


I love the way the Concordant Literal Version translates Matthew 2:1, 2:


Now, at Jesus' being born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, lo! magi from the East came along into Jerusalem, saying, "Where is He Who is brought forth King of the Jews? For we perceived His star in the East, and we came to worship Him." 


How awesome is that?! "We PERCEVED His star in the East"...


Perception is everything...


The little cartoon at the top about "Breakfast at Epiphany's" cracks me up, but there is also a subtle truth to it...the more sensitive that you become to the phenomena of having an epiphany, so more you see EVERYTHING as a miracle...

The United Nations has named 2015 as 'The Year of Light'...my prayer for you today is that you will walk in revelation and enlightenment and a continual unveiling of truth, not just on January 6, but in every day of this New Year...I pray for you to have the ability to think outside the religious box, as the Magi did 2,000 years ago, that you are able to transcend borders, as they did, and that you will find a deeper revelation of God on your own terms by following their example...

LET THERE BE LIGHT!

26 comments:

  1. Joshua Levi Lester said...

    Very nice Bish. Happy Epiphany

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  2. Tatay Kevin Main said...

    Wow....The Year of Light...that is awesome and I believe in line with what is taking place in millions of lives around the earth...waking up and becoming enlightened :-)

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  3. ..."usually initiated by some simple, homely, or commonplace occurrence or experience"... The Kings, and Epiphany, have been a recurring "point" of deeper revelation for me. As with any God story the tiniest details are needed to fully understand why a homely little event is so touching and important, but...I still have the ornament that was used to cosmically pull past, present and future into a God hug that was essential to my trust...it is not Mary and Joseph with baby Jesus, it is the 3 Kings, peering down at Him. So, yes! agreed! Following their example...this 2015 year of light...

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  4. Pamalia Ricketson Culvern said...

    Wow...That was Brilliant! THANKS for sharing. ♡

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  5. Ps..."understanding hash browns" ... I imagine there must be someone inside saying that about grits! ...so funny!!

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  6. Tony Roberts said...

    Profound writing, Jim! Thank you!!

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  7. Jean Wilkey De Sousa said...

    Thank you for sharing that and taking the time to do it. Such a faith booster on this cold day.....Love you....

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  8. Linda M Curtis said...

    nice.

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  9. Kimberly Turner said...

    Thank you, Bishop!

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  10. Eddie William Sellers said...

    Good stuff

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  11. Hannah Aaron said...

    Wow! Beautiful and profound! I love how you help me see the "big(ger) picture". How you "preach" from different angles, perceptions, definitions, in-depth, beneath the surface, the crust, but it's one in the same. You don't simply open the Word and read, you deliver. That's the way I like it...

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  12. Mike Gayle Inge said...

    Very well said Jim! This world needs more thinkers that preach the MYSTERY of the History! Let it SNOW! Michael

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  13. Mike Gayle Inge said...

    I love this and just read it to Gayle! This SNOWY word from the HEAVENS covers all fence lines...for it is a NEW day which is bringing a huge conscious SHIFT in ALL religious circles! Arise SHINE, for thy LIGHT IS come! I believe when God SAID in the beginn

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  14. Mike Gayle Inge said...

    Sorry...cont. beginning "let there be light" he was creating a MEMORY or mind of Christ!!! I did a tape back in the 90's called Superman and MEMORY lane...instead of Lois Lane. I dealt with this thinking pattern that MEMORY is pulled from two words...MEMbrane =water and Ory=light. So as he hovered over water he spoke light!!

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  15. Mike Gayle Inge said...

    That being said and interwoven into what you said; this year of light could be the year of us fully coming into the CONSCIOUSNESS of CHRIST!!!

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  16. Mike Gayle Inge said...

    Job 38:22 God was asking Job out of a vortex, storm cloud, portal or entryway; hast thou entered INTO the treasures of the SNOW? I believe he was JOGGING Job's MEMORY from a first Adam expression ushering him INTO the MEMORY(snow) or mind of Christ!! He had already opened up a GATEWAY...or STARgate in the mystery of this whirlwind! A whirlwind goes COUNTER clockwise which would have taken Job BACK to the FUTURE...or back to the beginning into this MIND of LIGHT!!!! Michael

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  17. Mike Gayle Inge said...

    I believed for several decades now that the book of Job is more theatrical than historical which to me it's a book about us starting in first Adam and entering into the NEW man in the end...the 42nd chapter which answers to the 42nd generation or US!!! He doubled everything back to Job he lost and only a FATHER can give a DOUBLE portion to a SON! Love you brother, your eternal friend, Michael - Snowman

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  18. Ralph Martin said...

    Excellent my friend thanks for sharing .....!

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  19. A James Collins said...

    Thank you Bishop for manifesting the theophany in your life! Be Light. & Njoy Life!

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  20. Danny Herring said...

    Wow. Awesome Bishop.

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  21. Frances Martin said...

    I love this

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  22. Natalie Warner said...

    Amen my love amen

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