Now after the birth of Jesus, which took place at Bethlehem in Judaea in the reign of King Herod, excitement was produced in Jerusalem by the arrival of certain Magi from the east,
inquiring, "Where is the newly born king of the Jews? For we have seen his Star in the east, and have come here to do him homage."
Reports of this soon reached the king, and greatly agitated not only him but all the people of Jerusalem.
So he assembled all the High Priests and Scribes of the people, and anxiously asked them where the Christ was to be born.
"At Bethlehem in Judaea," they replied; "for so it stands written in the words of the Prophet,
"`And thou, Bethlehem in the land of Judah, by no means the least honorable art thou among princely places in Judah! For from thee shall come a prince--one who shall be the Shepherd of My People Israel.'"
Thereupon Herod sent privately for the Magi and ascertained from them the exact time of the star's appearing.
He then directed them to go to Bethlehem, adding, "Go and make careful inquiry about the child, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and do him homage."
After hearing what the king said, they went to Bethlehem, while, strange to say, the star they had seen in the east led them on until it came and stood over the place where the babe was.
When they saw the star, the sight filled them with intense joy.