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The wise men from the East who were led by a star to Palestine to worship Jesus (Matt. 2.1, 7, 16). The Greek word for wise men (magoi) is translated as astrologer when it occurs in the LXX (Dan. 1.20; 2.2). It is rendered sorcerer in the Second Testament at other occurrences (Acts 13.6, 8). From the writings of Herodotus, a Greek historian in the fifth century B.C., the Magi were believed to be a caste of Medes who had a priestly function in the Persian Empire. The role of the star in Matthew 2 has often been viewed as having a connection with astrology. While pursuing the stars, they encountered a sign from God (Matt. 24.29­-30), which God used to break through their misguided system to participate in the story of Jesus.

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Jesus Followers


There are many synonyms to use for the word believer, which is the most common word for a person who has "converted" to follow Jesus. I have chosen "Jesus follower(s) or follower(s) of Jesus instead of the word believer in these presentations to allow the reader an opportunity to move away from the idea of believer which conjures up the possible thought of "ascent" to a set of doctrines that have been assembled by different groups over the centuries and show up in this day and age as a set of statements posted on web sites and other written material. These sets of beliefs are suggested by many as the ones that one should ascent to so that upon death the one who assents can go to heaven, i.e., just believe and you are good to go. Jesus followers/followers of Jesus suggest an action that one should take. Remember, Jesus told his disciples to follow him. Yes, belief is important, but one must move beyond belief to action.


(See "Discipleship" Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels. 182-188.)