1. Why is it significant that Magi from the east came to worship Jesus?
In giving these wise men from another country a sign to follow in the star, God shows us again that Jesus is the savior and lord of all people, not the Jews only.
2. What does it mean to think of Jesus as a shepherd-ruler (verse 6)?
A shepherd leads, cares for, and protects the sheep. He is also in authority over the sheep.
3. Why did the Magi give Jesus gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh?
Gold showed Jesus’ identity as a king. Frankincense was used in the incense in the Temple, showing Jesus’ identity as priest. And myrrh was used to anoint bodies for burial, showing that Jesus would be our savior when He died.
4. Verse 23 says the prophets foretold Jesus would be a Nazarene. While there is no existing prophecy so direct as to name Nazareth, we do have a prophecy concerning the region of Galilee, which is where Nazareth was.
Isaiah 9:1-2 - Nevertheless, there will be no more gloom for those who were in distress. In the past he humbled the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the future he will honor Galilee of the nations, by the Way of the Sea, beyond the Jordan—
have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of deep darkness
a light has dawned.
Nazareth also sounds like the word "branch" in Greek, so Matthew could be making a play on words, referring to Isaiah 11:1 -
A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse;
from his roots a Branch will bear fruit.
5. In Luke 2, we read a story about Jesus visiting the Temple. Why was it important for Him to be in “His Father’s house”?
Jesus always set the example for us. In this story, Jesus was showing us it’s important to worship and learn about God together as a church. When we come together as a church, the place where we're meeting becomes holy because God is there with us, just as the Temple was holy because God's Presence resided there.