The Wise Men visit Jesus

The story of the Wise Men is from Matthew 2:1-15. As this story is being told to toddlers I don’t mention Herod’s plan to kill the baby boys. It is a very dark part of the story and reminds us that Christmas and the birth of Jesus took place in a world where many people had rejected God.

To tell the story you need – some Wise Men, toy camels and a star. You can add some actions too – stars with hands (like in twinkle, twinkle little star), running, looking, kneeling.

The story

Do you remember how we heard about Jesus being born? He was a tiny baby. But then he grew and he was a toddler – just like you! He lived in a house with Mary and Joseph.

Far away from where Jesus lived there were some Wise Men. They read books and knew lots and lots of stuff. They loved to look at the stars in the dark nights sky. One night they saw a new star! They looked at the new star and they looked at each other. ‘Wow! they thought this new star means that a new king has been born in Israel. Let’s go and worship him’.

So they packed their things and set off for the important city of Jerusalem. They traveled for a long time. It took days and days to get there. But when they arrived in Jerusalem they couldn’t find a new baby king anywhere!

There was a king but he was a grown up and he wasn’t happy. He didn’t want a new King! He sent for the Wise Men. He sent for the men from the temple. ‘Where is this new King to be born?’ he asked. The men from the temple knew the answer. ‘In Bethlehem.’

So off the Wise Men went. It wasn’t too far to go now. As they got nearer something very special happened. The star was there again and this time it shone right over the house where Jesus was. The Wise men had found Jesus and they knelt down and worshiped him.

Herod didn’t want to worship Jesus. He wanted to get rid of him. An angel told Joseph to take Mary and Jesus and run away to a different country till it was safe to go back home.

Craft Idea –

Decorate stars – we’ve used wooden stars from amazon and paint. Put the painted star on a white envelope so you can name it. It’s much easier than writing it on the back and then having to turn the stars over at home time.




The Visit of The Magi – Epiphany


The arrival of The Magi, or Wise men or Three Kings is traditionally celebrated twelve days after Christmas day on the 6 December.

The story is recorded in Matthew’s Gospel chapter 2. These men came from the east and having seen a new star in the sky they decided that the new star signified the birth of a new king. They travelled all the way to Jerusalem looking for this new king. But he wasn’t to be found there. The religious leaders are summoned by King Herod and they know that the promised king is to be found in Bethlehem. The Magi travel on and they find Jesus in the house with his mother. The baby is now a young toddler. The family are living in a house in Bethlehem and haven’t yet returned to Nazareth. Jesus has already been to Jerusalem where he has been taken to the temple. Simeon and Anna have both recognised the baby as the promised Saviour. (see Luke 2).

The Magi follow the star to the house where Jesus is and give him the gifts of gold, frankinsense and myrrh. Herod has given them instructions to then return to Jerusalem and tell exactly where the child is so he too can ‘worship him’. But The Magi are warned in a dream to go home by a different route. When Herod realises that they haven’t done as he said he has all the young boys of bethleham killed. Mary and Joseph escape with Jesus to Egypt and return to live in Nazareth when Herod dies.

To tell the story-

Have a star and either pitures of The Magi or models. The ones in the pictures are from a Nativity set. (You can refer to The magi as Wise men or kings. The Bible doesn’t say how many there were but we know that they gave three gifts.)

‘A long, long, long time ago some Wise Men (show pictures or models) were looking up at the dark night sky. (Everyone look up).

They could see the stars twinkling in the sky (make stars shapes with hands). ‘Look’ they said ‘there is a brand new star!’ (show star) ‘The new star means that a new King has been born. We must find him and go and give him gifts.’

The wise men packed their bags. (Pretend to be packing bags).  They set off following the star.

They went to a big city. They didn’t find the new king there.

They went to a big palace. They didn’t find the new king there.

Where is he? The Wise men kept looking.

They followed the star to a small town with a small ordinary house and there was a little boy. He was the New king. His name is Jesus. The wise men bowed down and gave him their gifts. They had looked and looked for him and were so happy that they had found him.’

Older children could think about the word Epiphany and what it means. Although the Bible doesn’t use the word in this story it is the traditional word used to decribe the visit of The Magi. They could also make a timeline of events recorded in Luke and Matthew from the angels visit to Mary up to Luke 2:40 when the family return to Nazareth and settle. Both gospel writers include different parts of the Christmas Story.

Once they have a simple timeline they could plot the journeys taken by Mary and Joseph and, after he was born, Jesus and the Magi on a map.