MEDITATION ON THE EPIPHANY: Of The Coming Of The Three Kings Of The East, To Adore The Child: And Of Their Entrance Into Jerusalem POINT III
ANDREA DEL SARTO
Journey of the Magi
THE XXII. MEDITATION.
Of the coming of the three kings of the East, to adore the child: and of their entrance into Jerusalem.
THE III. POINT.
1. Thirdly, I am to consider the entrance of these kings into Jerusalem, & the demand they made saying: Where is he that is born king of the Jews? wherein are resplendent the great virtues of these men. For first, they show great faith, believing what they had not seen, confessing that there was born a child, who was the king, & Messias, promised to the Jews, & they doubted not hereof, but only of the place where he was to be born; for that he that revealed unto them the first, revealed not the second unto them.
2. Secondly, they showed great magnanimity, & fortitude: for divining what peril they might put themselves unto, of being put to death by Herod, for asking in his country, and court for another king: yet fora ll this, they entered not hidden, nor demanded secretly in corners, but publicly, and in his own palace. O heroic confidence, O courageous fortitude, inspired by this new born king, who though he hid from these sages the light of the visible Star, he hid not from them the invisible light of faith, by whose power the Saints overcome kingdoms, work justice, and obtain the fulfilling of all their promises.
O my soul, have a lively faith in thy God, for by his power thou shalt break walls, animate thyself to break through difficulties, fear not to set upon dangers, for he will protect thee, and set thee at liberty from them.
3. From this faith, and fortitude of these Sages it proceeded, that albeit at the hearing of this demand Herod was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him, yet they themselves were not troubled. Wherein I will ponder how Herod was troubled because he was a tyrant, and ambitious, and so feared least he that was born, might deprive him of his kingdom. But that which is most to be admired is, that the Jews also were troubled at that, for which they should rather have rejoiced, attending more to flatter, and to give contentment to a tyrant king then to the king of heaven that was promised unto them. Whereby I may learn how perilous a thing it is to entertain strict amity with potent, and vicious personages, which are easily troubled with passions of hatred, anger, revenge and ambition; for they being troubled, I may also be troubled with them. But if I trust in almighty God, as did the Sages, I shall not be troubled, though all others be troubled: rather I shall say with the Prophet David: Our Lord is my light, and my help, whom shall I fear? Our Lord is the protector of my life, who shall make me tremble? If armies of enemies come against me, my heart shall not fear; and though they make great war against me, I will not be dismayed, but will hope in our Lord.