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QUESTION: How Old Was Jesus When the 3 Wise Men Came?

Wise MenHow old was Jesus when the three wise men came to see him?

There are things here we do not know because the Bible does not say. The story of the visit of the wise men and the subsequent flight into Egypt and return (apparently first to Bethlehem with a later return to Nazareth) is in Matthew 2; the actual birth of Jesus is in Luke 2, along with the visit of the shepherds, Jesus’ dedication in the Temple, and later return to Nazareth.

Correlating these two accounts, we can logically infer that the youngest He could have been would be 40 days – for this is the age for male purification, according the law. This had to be before the flight into Egypt just after the visit of the wise men. The oldest He could have been would be two years, for Herod ordered the death of all males in Bethlehem “who were two years old and under.”

At the time of the visit of the wise men, Jesus and family were in a house, not still in the stable where Jesus was born. This means the pictures that show the shepherds and wise men visiting the babe in the manger at the same time are inaccurate.

By the way, the Bible does not actually say there were three wise men. We have assumed that because there were three different gifts (or types of gifts) named. There may have been three, but we do not know that from the Biblical record – not that it makes much difference.

I hope these few comments are of some help to you.


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