Advent: The Bright Morning Star
“And he took up his discourse and said, ‘The oracle of Balaam the son of Beor,
the oracle of the man whose eye is opened,
the oracle of him who hears the words of God,
and knows the knowledge of the Most High,
who sees the vision of the Almighty,
falling down with his eyes uncovered:
I see him, but not now;
I behold him, but not near:
a star shall come out of Jacob,
and a scepter shall rise out of Israel;
it shall crush the forehead of Moab
and break down all the sons of Sheth.'” (Numbers 24:15–17)
“‘I, Jesus, have sent my angel to testify to you about these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.’ The Spirit and the Bride say, ‘Come.’ And let the one who hears say, ‘Come.’ And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.” (Revelation 22:16–17)
Read: Numbers 24:15-17; Revelation 22:16-17
Back in the book of Numbers, God was already using the star and scepter as symbols of kingly promise for His people. This oracle from God was spoken through Balaam in Numbers 24 specifically to Balak (King of Moab), regarding the physical freedom of Israel. We look forward to the “bright morning star” mentioned in the final chapter of the Bible, Revelation 22. Jesus, “the root and descendant of David” is the eternal King. Jesus himself speaks through the apostle John in Revelation to give hope to the seven churches in Asia Minor. Christ our King reminds them: “…let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price” (Revelation 22:17).
What is our response to the Star of Jacob? The wise men in Matthew 2 followed the Star of Bethlehem to worship the King it pointed to. They traveled for months and brought priceless gifts of worship-worthy for an earthly king. In a similar way, we are pointed to the Bright Morning Star, the eternal King of Kings. May we offer our lives in joyful worship of His glory.
“Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, ‘Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.'” (Matthew 2:1–2)
- Remember, Jesus is enthroned above. He accomplished all that the Father commanded and now He is sitting again in His place of authority over all earthly and heavenly powers. Our eternal King, the Bright Morning Star is worthy of all honor!
- When you think of the Star of Bethlehem, does it remind you of the Bright Morning Star or simply a directional sign of where some wise men should drop their Christmas presents? Some of the final verses in Scripture (Revelation 22:16-17) remind us that Jesus is the Star, the eternal King. If you’re thirsty for hope and peace right now, look to the Bright Morning Star. He gives the “water of life without price.” This water is priceless beyond all measure, but it is offered as a gift to all who trust in Him.
Jesus, you are the Bright Morning Star. You are the eternal King who has miraculously come to earth through David’s family line. Thank you for giving me your Word so that I can look back to the prophecies you have fulfilled and look forward to promises you will fulfill. I praise you for the water of life you provide. Teach me to hunger and thirst for you alone. Teach me to desire and worship you alone.
Family Discipleship Time
Numbers 24:15-17; Revelation 22:16-17
- What does it mean when Jesus says, “I am the root and descendant of David” in Revelation? (Jesus was reminding them that He is the Messiah who came to rescue His people, just like the Old Testament promised.)
- Does it cost us anything to come to Jesus and trust Him as the water of life? (No, salvation is a free gift. We can’t do anything to earn Christ’s love and grace. But it cost Jesus everything. So, when we come to Jesus that means we are laying down everything else we trust, and saying that Jesus is the only one who is worthy of our trust and faith. He is the only one who can forgive our sins and give us new hearts! – Philippians 2:5-7, Ephesians 2:1-10)
- Video & poem – “The Innkeeper” by John Piper
Free Advent Bible Study (2023)
Let’s stand back and marvel at God’s grace and sovereignty, and focus on God this Christmas. May we join with the angels singing, “Glory to God in the highest” (Luke 2:14).
Join this 25-day Advent journey as we worship Christ and celebrate his coming.
John Ragon is Snowbird’s website manager. He lives in Western NC with his wife and six amazing kids, and began serving at Snowbird in 2009 after graduating from Union University.
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