In Matthew 2 we find the story of the wise men from the East coming to worship the newborn king of the Jews. The text says “the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was” (Mt 2:9b)

 

Was this star a natural or supernatural phenomenon? Both interpretations seem to be problematic. If it was a natural phenomenon, how could it be that the star stood specifically over Bethlehem? A natural celestial star would have naturally stood over every location in Israel, not just a tiny little town five miles from Jerusalem! That lends to the idea that the star was a supernatural phenomenon. But if it were supernatural, how is it that only the wise men picked up on it? Why weren’t the locals fascinated with this star? Why wasn’t anyone else drawn to the birthplace of Jesus through this star? Surely someone besides the wise men would have been drawn to a star that stood over a very specific location.

 

Does anyone have any suggestions for resolving this dilemma?