Xmas 5

Simeon Jesus Christ Baby MormonThe Greek text of Matthew calls them magoi, which derives from the term denoting priests in the Zoroastrian religion of ancient Persia. The idea that they were kings derives from later messianic readings of Isaiah 49:7 and 60:3-7. For this reason, John Wycliffe, when preparing the first English translation of the New Testament in 1382, rendered the Greek magoi (King James “wise men”) of Matthew 2:1 as kyngis, “kings.” One tradition holds that the wise men arrived in Bethlehem on 6 January, which is hence called “the festival of the kings. In some European nations, this is the day when people receive Christmas presents, in honor of the gifts of the magi.