Posted: Dec 26, 2013 6:01 PM by Pat Shingleton
The "Star in the East" that led the wise men in their journey to Bethlehem more than 2,000 years ago has puzzled Christian astronomers. Five years ago the Associated Press reported that astronomers, theologians and historians attempted to determine exactly which star might have inspired biblical passages. As noted in a previous column, Grant Matthews, an astrophysicist at the University of Notre Dame, confirmed the date of the star's appearance in 2009. In 1604 German astronomer, Johannes Kepler believed that the star appeared within the alignment of Mars, Jupiter and Saturn in 7 B.C. Matthews tapped the databases of NASA to verify when the star occurred, the star's characteristics and verification that others identified it.