In Matthew Chapter 2 in the New Testament, we read the story of the visit of wise men bringing gifts to the newborn King. Matthew’s telling of the event is the only one on record. He tells us that the wise men came from the east to Jerusalem, but he does not tell us how many wise men there were.
Matthew tells us that the wise men went to Herod the king of Judea and asked him where they would find the King of the Jews. They explained that they had followed a new star and came to worship the new King.
Herod inquired of his chief priests and scribes of the King of Jews. They searched the records and found that prophets had foretold that the King would be born in Bethlehem. Herod told the wise men to search for the new King until they found Him and then return and tell him where to find Him.
The wise men followed the star to Bethlehem and found “the young child” in a house with His mother. They worshipped the young King and presented their gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. They were warned in a dream to leave Bethlehem without telling Herod where they found the young King.
Herod was not pleased when the wise men did not return, and he sent soldiers into Bethlehem to kill every child two years old and younger. They did not find the new King because an angel warned Joseph to take Mary and Jesus into Egypt for safety. There they stayed until after Herod died.
Since there are no other records about the wise men, some people consider them to be simply legends. Robert Hutchinson wonders who about the wise men and why should we care. Heather Hemingway puts a personal touch on her question about the three kings.
On December 1, 1985, then President Ezra Taft Benson spoke at the First Presidency Christmas devotional on the topic “Keeping Christ in Christmas.” He opens his address with the following statement: “Without Christ there would be no Christmas, and without Christ there can be no fulness of joy.”
After explaining why we should love and worship Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, President Benson said, “And now, my beloved brothers and sisters, what must we do this Christmas season – and always? Why, we must do the same as the Wise Men of old. They sought out the Christ and found Him. And so must we. Those who are wise still seek Him today.
“`I would commend you,’ urged Moroni, `to seek this Jesus of whom the prophets and apostles have written.’ (Ether 12:41.) And God has provided the means – the holy scriptures, particularly the Book of Mormon – that all who seek may know that Jesus is the Christ.”
If we would be truly happy, we must be wise and seek to know Jesus Christ. We can seek Jesus by studying the Holy Scriptures, the Bible as well as the Book of Mormon. We can also learn more about Him through the words of Thomas S. Monson and other living prophets and apostles, such as Elder David A. Bednar’s address titled “If Ye Had Known Me.” Please, be wise!