3rd MESSIANIC SYMBOL for the Advent Season: Star

December 3:  Numbers 24:17

I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not near. A star will come out of Jacob; a scepter will rise out of Israel (NIV).

Today’s symbol is again a star–not many stars like yesterday, but one special star. A star will come out of Jacob.

Jacob was Abraham’s grandson. During Jacob’s life God changed his name to Israel. He became the father of the nation that God had chosen to set apart for Himself—the nation of Israel.

The six-pointed star that we call the Star of Jacob or the Star of David symbolizes nation of Israel and the religion of Judaism. During the time of Hitler, Jewish people were required to wear this star to identify themselves. Today this star appears on the national flag of Israel. The importance of this star in looking forward to Christ’s birth is that Jesus was to be born to a Jewish family. He was to be an Israelite, a member of God’s chosen people. His family practiced the religion of Judaism. Jesus would be the star that would come out of Jacob. In Revelation 22:16 Jesus calls Himself “the bright Morning Star.”

The star also reminds us of the Star of Bethlehem, the special star that appeared in the sky at the time of Jesus’ birth. This star guided the wise men to find the baby Jesus to worship Him. God sent His Son to be born in a Jewish family and gave the news of His birth first to Jewish shepherds. However, He did not send Jesus to the Jews alone. The wise men from the East were probably the first outside the nation of Israel to worship Jesus. They were the first of many non-Jewish people to bow down to Him, a group that includes most of us.

The verse begins, “I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not near.” Thousands of years passed from the time these words were written until the birth of Jesus. While Jesus’ birth is behind us in history, the day when we will see Him is ahead of us. Revelation 1:7 says, “Look, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him.” The star is both a fulfillment of ancient prophecy and a reminder of God’s promises that will be fulfilled when Jesus returns for us.

We three kings of Orient are
Bearing gifts we traverse afar
Field and fountain, moor and mountain
Following yonder star

O Star of wonder, star of night
Star with royal beauty bright
Westward leading, still proceeding
Guide us to thy Perfect Light

John Henry Hopkins (1820-1891)

Thank God for Jesus, the bright Morning Star, who has come and who will come providing us with salvation and a personal relationship with God.

Pray that we would reflect Jesus, the star out of Jacob, to the people around us.

As with gladness men of old
Did the guiding star behold;
As with joy they hailed its light,
Leading onward, beaming bright;
So, most gracious Lord, may we
Evermore be led to Thee.

William Chatterton Dix (1837-1898)


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