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Was the star that the Magi followed in Matthew 2, a real one? Or Something moving overhead that shed light? What always puzzles me is : If the star was a real one, I presume that its light was useless altogether to find where the baby Jesus was. Just suppose an extraordinarily big and bright 'star' hangs high up right over Bethlehem. Everyone at any point of place not only in Bethlehem but also nearby regions might see the star as hanging vertically. So I guess there follows this conclusion that the moving star the Magi followed was not a real star, but a light emitting object or maybe a brightly shining angel that of course the Lord God sent. And the source of light maybe is not so high up. What does anybody else think about it?

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Assuming these Magi from the east did not travel the distance (presumably from Persia because Magi is a Persian word??) in one night but probably took many weeks, then we observe several things about this "Star".

  • It traveled slowly enough for the Magi to follow
  • It traveled in the correct direction which would not have always been purely westward
  • It was conspicuous from other stars in the sky
  • In Matt 2:9 the star is reported as standing still over the house where the child (Jesus) was born
  • The prophecy of Balaam in Num 24:17 appears to predict such a star appearing

Thus, this was no ordinary star; nor could it have been a planetary conjunction because that does not last several weeks.

The only plausible explanation is a divine miracle to create such a "star" specifically to guide the Magi. Further than this we cannot know but only speculate.

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  • In Matthew 2:9 particularly, if it were a real star, its movement from Jerusalem to Bethlehem would have been imperceptible. Whatever it was, it couldn't have been very high up. Dec 9 '20 at 20:59

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