ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Three Gifts From the Wise Men - a Christmas Story

Updated on December 3, 2018
SamboRambo profile image

Sam was a Vietnam soldier, a writer of books and articles, an illustrator and a graphic artist. He also plays the piano and writes poetry.

The Author's Thoughts

Why did men come from afar to visit the Christ child? I raise the question because of a scripture in the New Testament: John 10:16 says: "And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd."

There is also a scripture in the Old Testament that tends to show that a prophet is always necessary, to proclaim the doings of God: "Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets" (Amos 3:7).

I like to think that those Magi or "Kings" came to know of the birth of the Savior by way of revelation as opposed to "Magic" or "Astrology." And if the visitors were prophets - from "another fold" - then in order to properly testify of Jesus Christ, they would have to actually see Him. Associated with the workings of prophets are their writings. I talked with a man who walked among the Burmese people. He said that they have a verbal tradition that speaks of spiritual writings upon gold plates. I like to think that those writings contain the testimony of those "kings" that visited the Christ Child, and that some day they will come forth for all to see.

The Story

Avishai hurried to the inn where he hoped to meet Matthew. As he passed through the dusty streets, his tormented mind reviewed first, that wondrous night when the angels came to him and his fellow shepherds to proclaim the birth of the promised messiah. Demanding equal time was the tragedy almost two years later when his son, Levi, was murdered by Herod’s soldiers.

Initially, Avishai thought he could never be purged of the wonder of that glorious night when beings of light that exuded tremendous love sang songs so lovely and therapeutic that he thought could not have possibly been made on earth. But the murder of his son put a thick, black cloud over that experience, and the effects of the visions were wearing quite thin, now that 17 years had passed.

He had never seen this child – the supposed object of the prophecy; others had, but he went later, and found the house empty where they were reported to have been. He had been searching for this “messiah” ever since, though it was a half-hearted search after his son was killed. Later, he had inherited a good quantity of trinkets and precious metals from some anonymous relative or other source he couldn't explain. This distracted his search for the messiah, and he dedicated his time to the investment of the trinkets, which necessitated a move to another town for a time. Now, he was beginning to wonder if a messiah child was actually born, when he heard of a fellow by the name of Matthew who claimed to have some information on this subject.

When Avishai arrived at the inn, he found a small crowd around a young man of 18 years who was answering questions. Avishai wiggled his way to the front. When the young man was done answering the last question, Avishai asked, “Are you named Matthew?”

“You have spoken it,” The man answered, nodding.

Avishai leaned toward Matthew and spoke in a low voice. “I understand you know of the messiah child who was born in Bethlehem 17 years ago. Is he the Messiah?”

“Yes, it is he,” Matthew answered.

“And how do you know this?”

Matthew thought a moment then said, “There are many events surrounding this birth that are the fulfillment of prophecy. One, is that he would be born to a virgin. The husband of the child’s mother assured me that he did not know her when she conceived.

“Another prophecy is that the child would come from the house of David. This, too is true.

“Also, there was a prophecy that other children would be killed by a jealous king, to assure this messiah would not threaten his reign.”

Avishai’s mouth dropped. “What did you say?”

“Yes," Matthew replied. "Jeremiah prophesied: ‘Thus saith the Lord; A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation, and bitter weeping; Rahel weeping for her children refused to be comforted for her children, because they were not.’ ”

Avishai raised his voice, showing a trace of anger: “You are saying that my . . . . my son was killed because of this messiah child?”

Everyone in the area, who had been buzzing with small talk, suddenly became quiet. All eyes were now on Avishai. Matthew looked at Avishai with a sad expression mixed with slight surprise. “Are you called Avishai?” he asked.

Avishai returned a puzzled look. “Yes, I am!”

Matthew turned to the other people. “Please let us be. I must ask this man’s time.”

Avishai watched with both puzzlement and patient anger as the crowd dispersed.

When they were alone, Matthew put his hand on Avishai’s shoulder. “I know of you. This child, who is named Jesus, has been looking for you. He asked me to bring you to him if I found you.”

As they walked to the place where Jesus was, Avishai wondered how he would confront him. Would he attack him? Would he ask him why his child had to die? He told Matthew the story in detail and threw accusations at him, as if he were the child of prophesy. He cried as he told of the torment in his soul, a torment where the visions of that holy night fought with the death of his son, and why should he believe in a messiah, now?

A young man of about 17 years saw them approaching from far off, and came to meet them. He was of frail build, carried a worried look on his lean face, and had eyes that looked deep into his soul.

Before Avishai could say anything, the young man asked, “Are you Avishai? The shepherd who witnessed the message of the angels?”

Avishai stared at the youth as he barely nodded his head.

“I am called Jesus," The young man said, "I was born that night, of Mary, wife of Joseph, son of David. You are the one who has lost a son to Herod’s rampage against the children.”

Avishai grimaced in an effort to hide his emotions. “Yes. Levi. How did you know?”

“When someone loses a child, especially to such a corrupt whim, it is hardly concealed from the public. My parents knew of you, and they tried to help you in their own humble way.”

“Why would would they want to help me?”

“Because you were the only shepherd who saw the glorious visions, and who also lost a son to Herod’s rage.”

“I don’t remember any help coming from them.”

“Do you remember an anonymous donation of myrrh for the embalming of your son?”

Avishai looked with surprise at Jesus, who continued, “My parents gave you a generous supply: many bottles to last you years, or to trade for money.”

Avishai just stared at Jesus.

“Later," Jesus continued, "you received some gold. Much gold. I suspect you spent it well, or invested it to bring you continual returns?”

Avishai sat down on the nearest bench. Shakily, he said, “I have never lacked anything in life.”

“This was from me," Jesus said. "My parents had saved it to give to me. I then sent it to you, without revealing my name.”

Avishai stared ahead. Weakly, he said, his voice wavering, “More important than gold or myrrh is the life of my son. How can that replace him?”

“Your loss," Jesus explained, "is a type for the loss our Father who is in heaven will suffer. He will give His only Son, just as you have given yours. But if this sacrifice were not to happen, then a more permanent loss will have come between you and your son.”

“I do not understand your words.”

“In time you will, good Sir. Meanwhile, I believe you are ready for a third gift which I have for you. Please follow me.” He turned and entered a carpenter's shop with a doorway that appeared to be permanently open. From a shelf, he pulled a box containing bottles of liquids and gummy substances. There was also a golden censer nestled in by the bottles. He turned to Avishai and held it out to him. “This is worth more than gold. But its spiritual value is worth much, much more. It is frankincense.”

Avishai looked at the box suspiciously. “Why are you giving this to me?”

“Take this box home with you. Put a cake of frankincense in the censer and burn it. As you feel the aroma, pray to our Father who is in Heaven, and ask Him to give you peace over your loss. Doing this, you will get an answer.”

Avishai hesitated, wondering if he should just unleash all his anger and frustration right now, while this person was still in his company. He looked into his eyes, and saw something that disarmed him: Again, he saw worry, but he also saw understanding and a calm reassurance. He saw a face that looked familiar – a friendly face – as if he had been his brother in another reality.

He returned home and inspected the box of frankincense, fingering the censer while he thought back on his miserable life.

Finally, he did as directed, and prepared some frankincense. After the cake was burning, and as he felt the aromas, he began a chant, which was his version of prayer.

His mind began to clear, and to quiet down – not of noise, but of turmoil and confusion. He felt peace growing within him. The peace turned into gladness. He saw comparisons of his past life. He saw the magnitude of the angels’ visit. He saw the heaviness of his son’s death. Next, he saw a visual representation of what Jesus had explained as “the sacrifice.” He saw the results of this sacrifice, discovering that it meant his son would live again, and they would meet at God’s feet in the end. The significance of this “atonement” became much more grand and important than the loss of his son, and in fact dwarfed what now seemed a brief time of bereavement.

Next, his son’s face appeared before him. The face was that of his infant son at first, then it changed into the image of a young man. Surprisingly, he spoke: “Greetings, Father.”

Surprised, Avishai hesitated. “You can see me?”

“Yes, Father. Have you been well?”

Avishai sobbed a few breaths of air, stifled a wail of gratitude, then said, “Levi! Levi! O, Levi! What has happened to you?”

“I am happy, Father, happier than one can dream of.”

“My son, you have died that Jesus might live! How can I accept that?”

“Father, Jesus--after living a perfect life--will suffer an unjust death. This will put the grave in subjugation to Jesus, and He will, in turn, use that power to overcome death for all of us. Thus, we will live again after we die.”

The incense burned out and the smoke thinned. “I must go now, Father.”

“Why must you go? Why leave me in this miserable world?”

“When you can’t bear it, light the censer again, and we will continue. But do not overdo it, lest you forget your life here, and your family. You have enough frankincense to return to me often enough, to the point of healing. Goodbye, father. Please find joy, and I ask that you keep that night with the angels sacred in your heart.”

Avishai noted that his wife was standing in the doorway. She asked, “Who were you talking to?”

He thought for a moment, then said, smiling serenely, “I was praying, my beloved. Next time I pray, I would like to take you with me, and see what is waiting for us. Meanwhile, I would like to talk to you about that vision I had from the angels on that special night, that now seems just the other day.”


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • SamboRambo profile imageAUTHOR

      Samuel E. Richardson 

      8 years ago from Salt Lake City, Utah

      Thank you, Bird. And thanks for the heads up on the podcast. I've been away, and didn't know it was done.

    • Hyphenbird profile image

      Brenda Barnes 

      8 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

      I just listened to the podcast and read your story. It is very touching and beautiful.

    • SamboRambo profile imageAUTHOR

      Samuel E. Richardson 

      8 years ago from Salt Lake City, Utah

      Thank You, Simone, I appreciate that.

    • Simone Smith profile image

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      8 years ago from San Francisco

      Most thought provoking. Hahaa, I enjoyed reading this!


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)