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I would say that the specific gifts mentioned in Matthew 2:11 (gold, frankincense, and myrrh) were prophetically symbolic of Jesus' status, and of His forthcoming ministry. Gold symbolized his role as a King (which the wise men themselves had recognized in referring to Him in Matthew 2:2 as "the king of the Jews", and as also indicated by His royal descent noted in Matthew 1:1-16 and Luke 3:23-38). Frankincense (used as part of worship to provide a "sweet-smelling savor" to God, as noted (for example) in Psalm 141:2) was an indication of Jesus' status as God Incarnate, and as the Great High Priest. Myrrh (ointment), which was used (among other things) in connection with embalming a body for burial (as noted by Jesus in Matthew 26:6-13) indicated awareness of the sacrificial death that Jesus would die to atone for the sins of the world. The traditional Christmas hymn "We Three Kings of Orient Are" contains individual verses discussing each of these three offerings and their significance.
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