Epiphany is a Greek word, found in the Bible, and it means the manifestation (or appearing, showing forth) of divine glory. What we celebrate on Epiphany (January 6, and the season that follows it) is the manifestation of God’s glory in Christ. On Christmas we celebrated God’s becoming Man – “the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us”; on Epiphany, we celebrate the manhood in which the glory of God was manifested – “we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only-begotten Son of the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14). Our prayer in Epiphany is that the wisdom, power, and goodness of God manifested to us in Jesus, may be manifested in us, who believe in him. As Isaiah the prophet puts it, “Arise, shine, for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee” (Isaiah 60:1). There are in fact multiple moments of Epiphany which we commemorate in the course of the season – such as Christ’s baptism in Jordan (when the voice from heaven acclaimed him beloved Son, and the Spirit descended on him in the form of a dove); and his first miracle at the wedding in Cana, when he turned water into wine. But on the feast of the Epiphany (January 6), it is the worship of Mary’s child by the star-led magi that commands our attention, in which we see that the new born King of the Jews, the Messiah, is also come as the Savior of the world, and calls “all sorts and conditions of men” to know and worship him. There are no outsiders, and no insiders around the manger!
If you have questions or topics for this feature, please send them to the rector, Rev. Gavin Dunbar.