Eternal God, there’s so much evil in this world that sometimes I get discouraged. I’m thankful to have You.
Read Matthew 2:13-23
 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.”  So he got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt,  where he stayed until the death of Herod. And so was fulfilled what the Lord had said through the prophet: “Out of Egypt I called my son.”  When Herod realized that he had been outwitted by the Magi, he was furious, and he gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi.  Then what was said through the prophet Jeremiah was fulfilled:  “A voice is heard in Ramah, weeping and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children and refusing to be comforted, because they are no more.”  After Herod died, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt  and said, “Get up, take the child and his mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who were trying to take the child’s life are dead.”  So he got up, took the child and his mother and went to the land of Israel.  But when he heard that Archelaus was reigning in Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there. Having been warned in a dream, he withdrew to the district of Galilee,  and he went and lived in a town called Nazareth. So was fulfilled what was said through the prophets, that he would be called a Nazarene. Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhat two prophecies about Jesus were fulfilled here?
Just as the fiercest fighting of World War II came as the Allies sought to establish bridgeheads on D-Day, so now evil strikes back to snuff out God’s rescue mission before it has begun. The age of the children killed indicates a date up to two years after Jesus’ birth, which was when the star appeared. The Magi, then, come to a house, not a stable, and to a child, not a baby. Herod’s thinking is beyond comprehension. Seemingly, he takes prophecy seriously, directing the Magi on that basis, but he then seeks to prevent the prophecy being fulfilled. Herod’s atrocity simply defies God. When confronted with the reality of evil, we shouldn’t despair or be confused; we should expect it. When we don’t understand, we take comfort in the fact that God is neither indifferent nor immune to our suffering. He is a Father who has buried a Son. Be comforted that it was love that sent Jesus to earth. Be reassured that our faith helps us grapple with the reality of evil in a way that most worldviews simply do not. Trust is our only option.
Where is the battle with evil going on in your life? Seek God’s strength and love in your spiritual battles.
Lord, You have power over all evil. Strengthen my faith, I pray, so that I can stand strong against it.
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