Why do people think there were 3 wise men that visited Jesus, and why are they referred to as 'Maji'?
I know the bible says they brought gifts of 'gold, frankincence, and myrrh', but that certainly doesn't mean 3 gifts... just what they were made of. It would be like saying today's kids get gifts of plastic, metal and glass, which could describe hundreds of toys. It's not likely that one guy brought Jesus a brick of gold. In fact, one of the wise men might have brought frankincence IN a gold container. Anyway, I've always been curious why people are so dead-set on there being three wise men.
Also, where does the term Magi come from? It certainly isn't in the King James version, and I can't find evidence of it in the Hebrew texts (not that I am proficient in Hebrew).
PLEASE do not copy and paste answers (esp. long ones) from Wikipedia and such. I have already read all those
1. No I am NOT trying to belittle the scriptures. I am a devout Christian who tries to understand the core of scripture, not ideas popularized by men in the last 2000 years.
2. The answers provided about the Maji still don't explain why it is not actually in the Bible. I KNOW what a Maji is, and I KNOW that it is a Greek concept. The problem is, Jesus wasn't Greek, and neither were the men who wrote the Gospels. Since they didn't call the men Maji, why have people since decided to call them that?
3. And finally, why is no one answering my first question... why do people (including the web sites included here as links) claim there were 3 wise men?