And when they came into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshiped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.
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Augustine of Hippo
Gold, as paid to a mighty King; frankincense, as offered to God; myrrh, as toone who is to die for the sins of all.
And going into the house. Several of the Fathers in their homilies, represent the wise men adoring Jesus in the stable, and in the manger. yet others, with St. Chrysostom take notice, that before their arrival, Jesus might be removed into some little house in Bethlehem.
Prostrating themselves, or falling down, they adored him, not with a civil worship only, but enlightened by divine inspiration, they worshipped and adored him as their Saviour and their God.
Gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Divers of the ancient Fathers take notice of the mystical signification of these offerings; that by gold was signified the tribute they paid to him, as to their king; by incense, that he was God; and by myrrh, (with which dead bodies used to be embalmed) that now he was also become a mortal man. See St. Ambrose lib. 2. in Luc. chap. ii.; St. Gregory (Witham)
The Church sings, "hodie stella Magos duxit ad præsepium "but it is not probable that the blessed Virgin should remain so long in the open stab...
This service of the star is followed by the rejoicing of the Magi.
ord.: He rejoices indeed who rejoices on God’s account, who is the true joy. "With great joy,” he says, for they had great cause.
Anselm: in these offerings we observe their national customs, gold, frankincense, and various spices abounding among the Arabians; yet they intended thereby to signify something in mystery.
Anselm: The three men who offer, signify the nations who come from the three quarters of the earth. They open their treasures, i.e. manifest the faith of their hearts by confession. Rightly “in the house,” teaching that we should not vaingloriously display the treasure of a good conscience. They bring “three "gifts, i.e. the faith in the Holy Trinity. Or opening the stores of Scripture, they offer its threefold sense, historical, moral and allegorical; or Logic, Physic, and Ethics, making them all serve the faith. ...
Hom. in Evan., 1, 106: Gold, as to a King; frankincense, as sacrifice to God; myrrh, as embalming the body of the dead.
Something further may yet be meant here. Wisdom is typified by gold; as Solomonsaith in the Proverbs, “A treasure to be desired is in the mouth of the wise.”
They rejoiced, because their hopes were not falsified but confirmed, and because the toil of so great travel had not been undertaken in vain.
By the mystery of this star they understood that the dignity of the King then born exceeded the measure of all worldly kings.
“Mary His mother,” not crowned with a diadem or laying on a golden couch; but with barely one garment, not for ornament but for covering, and that such as the wife of a carpenter when abroad might have. Had they therefore come to seekan earthly king, they would have been more confounded than rejoiced, deeming their pains thrown away. But now they looked for a heavenly King; so that though they saw nought of regal state, that star’s witness sufficed them, and their eyes rejoiced to behold a despised Boy, the Spirit shewing Him to the ir hearts in all His wonderful power, they fell down and worshipped, seeing the man, they acknowledged the God.
And though it were not then understood what these several gifts mystically signif...
How then says Luke, that He was lying in the manger? Because at the birth indeed she presently laid Him there (for, as was not unlikely, in that large assemblage for the taxing, they could find no house; which Luke also signifies, by saying, Because there was no room, she laid Him there); but afterwards she took Him up, and held Him on her knees. For no sooner was she arrived at Bethlehem than she brought her pangs to an end, that you may thence also learn the whole dispensation, and that these things were not done at random, or by chance, but that they all were in course of accomplishment, according to some Divine foreknowledge, and prophetic order.
But what was it that induced them to worship? For neither was the Virgin conspicuous, nor the house distinguished, nor was any other of the things which they saw apt to amaze or attract them. Yet they not only worship, but also open their treasures, and offer gifts; and gifts, not as to a man, but as to God. For the frankincense and the...
And it was not enough to say, “They rejoiced,” but “they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.”.
He adds, “greatly,” shewing that men rejoice more over what they have lost than over what they possess.
And it is to be known that each did not offer a different gift, but each one the three kings, each one thus proclaiming the King, the God, and the man. ...
At the time of His birth, the Virgin laid the Child in the manger as
they could not find a house then. But later it is most likely that they found a house, and it is there that the Magi found them. Joseph and Mary had gone up to Bethlehem to be enrolled there, as Luke says (Lk 2), and as there was a great number of people assembled there for the census, they did not have a house for a time, and so He was born in the cave. Later a house was found and there the Magi saw the Lord.
Behold, what enlightened souls! They saw a pauper, and worshipped. For they had been informed that He was God, and therefore they also offered Him gifts, as to God and man. Listen, then:
Gold they offered to Him as to a king, for we pay tribute of gold to the king to whom we are subject. They offered frankincense as to God, for we burn incense to God. They offered myrrh since He would taste of death. For the Jews would prepare the dead for burial with myrrh to preserve the body from corruption. Myrrh, which...