Matthew 2:9-13 (NIVUK)
9 After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen when it rose went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. 11 On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshipped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. 12 And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.
13 When they had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. ‘Get up,’ he said, ‘take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.’
Discipleship, including worship, can be a costly business! It cost the magi financially through the gifts they brought to Jesus (quite an unusual baby shower…), and through the loss of time and convenience, as Grant reminded us on Sunday, they had come on a significant journey, no doubt been treated with a little bit of suspicion as foreigners, and then had to take the probably not-so-scenic route back home. Of course, for Mary and Joseph, discipleship was costly too, having to flee from home in Israel to Egypt to protect the young Jesus from Herod. For both the magi, and Mary and Joseph, it was worth it. They got to be with Jesus.
…Whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things… (Philippians 3:7-8)