The story of the star is one of the most significant in the whole Bible, not just as an extraordinary standalone mythic phenomenon, but also as a trigger event for the literal birth of a whole spiritual movement that now influences over two billion people worldwide.
Without predispositions or prejudice, archeoastronomers have engaged the story of the star based on their own revised definition of myth as a valid ancient perspective, as a scientific and historical background, and as an invitation to explore.
Where everyone must start is the single account of this amazing star in the Bible itself, from the book of Matthew 2:2-10:
“Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”
When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him. When he had called together all the people’s priests and teachers of the law, he asked where the Messiah was to be born. “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they replied, “for this is what the prophet has written:
“But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you will come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.”
Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him.”
After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen when it rose went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were overjoyed.
This is the one account of this in the Bible.
The ancient crime scene testimony focuses on three key statements:
- From the time of King Herod
- Magi from the east
- We have seen a star in the east when it rose