PART II: THE STORY OF THE CHRISTMAS STAR, TOLD BY AN ASTROLOGER

December 17, 20143 Comments

“Connecting the Seen and the Unseen Worlds,” by Deborah Smith Parker

Book of Matthew(This post starts by repeating the last paragraph from Part I that leads into Part II of this story. Click here  if you have not read Part I and would like to.) . . . In the King James Version, Matthew says Herod was “troubled” to hear what the wise men had told him  about the birth of the Messiah. The New Revised Standard Version says he was “frightened.” The Greek word both interpretations are translated from is tarasso, which according to Strong’s means “to agitate, trouble,” siding with the King James Version. . . .

In any event none of this was good news for Herod since there is only room for one king in a kingdom. He called his chief priests and scribes. Matthew does not use the word magos to describe them. He asked them where the Messiah was prophesized to be born and they tell him Bethlehem. Since all associated with Herod showed surprise about the presence of a star, it is safe at this point to say that no one other than the wise men had actually seen the referenced star shining in the heavens.

Surely such a phenomenon, had it occurred as tradition states, would not go unnoticed, and Herod would have had his priests and scribes scour their records of prophesies and would already be out looking for the child, not taken by surprise by the visiting astrologers.

Then something curious happened. Herod asked the wise men a question. He wanted to know the time they first saw the star. Some translations say the “exact time” (New Standard Revised) and others say “enquired of them diligently” (King James). The Greek word that both versions translate from is akriboo, which Strong’s says means “to know accurately, to do exactly.” Why would Herod want to know that?

There’s a joke in the astrological community that if 10 “ordinary” people and one astrologer witness a car crash, all the witnesses would ask a lot of questions about what others saw. Only the astrologer would ask if anyone noted the exact time the crash happened because knowing the exact time of an event is critical for casting an accurate chart. It is highly probable that Herod and his boys wanted to do their own astrological research. It would be the practice of the times and not out of the ordinary to request such information.

Wise MenWe have further evidence of the role of the wise men and Herod’s belief in their astrological prognostications. He had asked them to tell him where the baby was once they found him, which they didn’t do, having been warned in a dream not to tell him. Matthew reports that Herod became so enraged when he learned the wise men had departed his kingdom without telling him the baby’s whereabouts, and so frightened about the threat to his kingdom this baby presented that he ordered the slaughter of all boys under the age of two, additional support for the argument that Jesus had already been born long before their arrival.

Matthew tells us more about the star rising before the wise men, which again only they seemed to see. In fact, around the time that most biblical scholars estimate Jesus was more than likely born, there was a powerful configuration of planets. An astrologer would see this as an indication of something special, even extraordinary.

However—BIG however here—such a configuration would go unnoticed by the non-astrologer since the planets involved don’t have a spectacular presence in the heavens. In fact two of the main planets involved which are visible to the naked eye, Saturn and Jupiter, come together every 20 years and their joint appearance in the sky is decidedly unspectacular. Additionally, there are circumstances surrounding the other planets we now know were involved–Uranus, Neptune and Pluto—that are not visible by the naked eye and the facts of their presence in our solar system were not known. Only mystics would be aware of them.

However people choose to interpret the story recorded in Matthew, and regardless of one’s religious beliefs, nearly everyone agrees that something world-changing was brought into human consciousness through the life of Jesus. The point in retelling this story is that it was a “star” that was the indicator of his birth on this planet, and it was astrologers who identified what the astrological marker meant, pointed it out to others who did not know, and then used the astrological indicators to find him.

What strikes me most about this story is that I wonder how much the world would have known of this remarkable man had the wise men not sought the manifestation of the extraordinary event they knew had taken place, indicated by the culminating astrological indicators.

Here endeth the story.

Deborah Smith Parker is a professional astrologer and writer on many subjects. She is author of the newly released (2014) “The Horse that Haunts My Heart” and (2010) “Humanus Astrologicus,” both available in paperback and Kindle. To sign up to receive her blog or follow her on Twitter (@astro_logicus) and Facebook click to the right of this post.

About author:

Deborah Smith Parker is re-writing the often impenetrable language of astrology into a much friendlier form. She has spent her 30 plus years as an astrological consultant, writer, teacher and lecturer freeing the rich astrological images and their descriptions increasingly buried under modern clinical and technological descriptions. Her additional work in public policy has provided many outlets for demonstrating her ability to break down highly complex systems into information that’s easily understood.

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3 Responses to “PART II: THE STORY OF THE CHRISTMAS STAR, TOLD BY AN ASTROLOGER”

  1. jill estensen says:

    Love the story. This was back when astronomy & astrology were one.

  2. Please see my article “Was Jesus a Gemini?” at http://www.astrologynewsservice.com.

    An entire time-line of birth events can be reconstructed through scripture and the use of the (then) current transits. All can be correlated with historical fact.

    The Jupiter-Saturn conjunction of May 29, 7 BC was also parallel. It would have been a ‘visual’ star in a night sky unpolluted by artificial light. But it was the New Moon EXACTLY at dawn on Jerusalem’s eastern horizon that led the Wise Men there. Magi were secretive and close-knit, and it is doubtful they would volunteer any information to Herod, and Herod’s own astrologers were obviously not of the caliber of the Chaldean Magi. And, Magi are documented to have honored the birth of Nero — also a sunrise birth — in Rome (my interview with Mark Kidger of the European space agency, also Bernadette Brady’s paper published I think last year).

    That’s THE chart: Sunrise, May 29, 7 BC. It provides amazing secondary progressions for ALL the known life events! The ASTROLOGY proves it.

  3. It is truly enjoyable to consider what the Chaldean Magi likely saw. I too enjoyed Dr. Brady’s work on this subject and had fun doing charts for the crescent moons and other events mapping what the skies looked like during the year of 0007BC through Dr. Brady’s “Starlight” program. It does seem odd that Wise Men would alert a sitting king that his successor had been born. But it makes for a great validation story of the importance of your prophet written about 90 years later for a people with respect for astrologers. Thanks for a terrific article, Deborah.

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