A couple of questions

Hi, I have three questions about what is mentioned in scripture:

  1. Why does God allow polygamy for the patriarchs such as Jacob in the Old Testament?

  2. Who were the Magi, or the Wise men who visited and adored Christ?

  3. What was the Star of Bethlehem, an angel, astrology on the part of the Wise men, something else?

Thanks in advance and God bless.

For the same reason Moses allowed men to divorce their wives–because of their weakness. Jesus told us this himself. Before Christ brought in the Age of Grace, in which the Holy Spirit was poured out on mankind through the sacrificial death of Christ, men lived according to their wants and lusts. The Law of Moses curbed some of that, but it was still impossible to live the kind of life of grace that God would have us live by just trying to keep the Law. St. Paul explains this quite fully in Galatians.

  1. Who were the Magi, or the Wise men who visited and adored Christ?

We don’t really know. :slight_smile: There has been much speculation and there are traditions passed down by the cultures of the Middle East claiming they were members of this or that group of philosophers, astrologers (astrology was the astronomy of the times), but no one really knows. It’s fine to let it remain a mystery. It doesn’t really matter. What matters in Matthew’s account is that their visit was the catalyst for the Holy Family fleeing into Egypt and the slaughter of the Innocents.

  1. What was the Star of Bethlehem, an angel, astrology on the part of the Wise men, something else?

Once again, we don’t know. And again, there has been endless speculation from astronomical occurrences to an angel led them. And again, it doesn’t really matter. Matthew is telling us that this was the first sign that Christ came for all men, not just for Israel, and that he was to be prophet, priest and king, as indicated by the three gifts the Magi gave him.

Thanks in advance and God bless.

:tiphat: and God bless you and yours. :smiley:

According to a priest whom I deeply admire: “Polygamy, although allowed by God at that time, was never His will; furthermore, every time it appeared, the result was trouble (Ishmael versus Isaac; the discord between Jacob’s sons; the violence involving David’s sons, etc.)”

He may not have forbidden it, but it clearly was never His will.

  1. Who were the Magi, or the Wise men who visited and adored Christ?

They were not kings, as in the popular song. Although Scripture does not say, they were most likely astrologers from the region of Mesopotamia (in the east) who followed the star of Bethlehem in search of prophecy. The period surrounding 1BC (Jewish 3760; Roman 763AUC) was the beginning of the astrological Age of Pisces.

  1. What was the Star of Bethlehem, an angel, astrology on the part of the Wise men, something else?

We really don’t know, but since it drew the astrologers/magi, we can assume it was an astronomical body, or other celestial appearance. Some have theorized that it was a rare conjunction of Venus and Jupiter; others a comet; others a nova. We don’t know.

ICXC NIKA

Hi!
…yeah… there are confusing issues in the Old Testament…

  1. The only thing I could say is that we must consider the situation: the Hebrews were small in number and many times behaved according to the customs of the people around them… however, note that both Abraham and Jacob had children that did not become the “child” of the Promise as God would only accept Isaac (Abraham’s son by Sarah) and Joseph (Jacob’s son by Rachel).

  2. There are various takes on this mostly that they were astronomers from the East; some speculate that they were kings or at least important members of their respective nations. What is most interesting is that they Knew Jesus to be the King of the Jews (check out 1 Samuel 8: 6 But when they said, “Give us a king to lead us,” this displeased Samuel; so he prayed to the Lord. 7 And the Lord told him: “Listen to all that the people are saying to you; it is not you they have rejected, but [size=]they have rejected me as their king.[/size])

  3. This is something extra–God, knowing the minds of the Magi used their knowledge and interest (nature) to let Himself be known to them. There’s an interesting dvd titled “The Star of Bethlehem” which aired on EWTN, the Catholic Network; it could be on-line at their site or you could purchase it–it is a wonderful documentary demonstrating, through math and astronomy, the existence of that very star, proving, through science, that the event did take place in human history! I was mesmerized by the presentation–imagine, God Reveals Himself through nature, math, and science and the evidence is empirical!

Maran atha!

Angel

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