1) When did the wise men come to Jesus?

Question

When did the wise men come to Jesus?

Answer

Bible provides us hints referring to the date.

The wise men….

  1. …visit Jesus in a house, indicating that they came days after Jesus birth.
  2. …came when human Jesus was a young children (παιδιον ‘paidion’), not a newborn (βρεφος ‘brefos’), indicating that they came no less than 2 weeks later (the end of 6th of January 4 BC, in other word, the begining of 7th of January 4 BC).
  3. …came before the death of Herod, indicating that they came before April 4 BC Julian Calender.
  4. …came when Mary and Joseph were still in Bethlehem, indicating that they came before February 4 BC Julian Calender.

The hints point to the end of 6th or the beginning of 7th of January to unknown date of February 4 BC Julian Calendar as the possible time of the wise men temporarily staying in Bethlehem.

Traditionally, believers observe Epiphany and welcome this event on 6th of January, believing in the end of 6th of January as the first day the wise men came to Jesus. They came from far kingdoms. Then, they needed taking a rest for days or weeks before returning to their homes.

Time in Julian Calendar Event Ref
25th of December 5 BC Jesus was born in a cave in outer skirt of Bethlehem. SeeTrain of Thought about Christmas December 25
A day between 26th and 30th of December 5 BCE Joseph, Mary, and Jesus moved to a house in Bethlehem City. Matthew 2: 11
31st of December 4 BC Preparation for Jesus circumcision (religious and social event) in Bethlehem. Considering social setting of Luke 2: 21
1st of January 4 BC Jesus circumcision in Bethlehem Luke 2: 21
6/7th of January 4 BC The wise men arrived at Bethlehem. SeeWhen did the wise men come to Jesus
2nd of February 4 BC Purification of Mary in Jerusalem Luke 2: 22
February 4 BC Matthew 2:13-15
February – April 4 BC Dwelt in Egypt Matthew 2:13-15
April 4 BC Luke 2:39; Matthew 2: 15, 19-23

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