Scripture reading for March 5th: Luke 2
The baby Jesus was circumcised on the eighth day according to the Law. After the time of Mary’s purification, Joseph and Mary took Him to the temple to dedicate Him to the Lord as the law commanded for the first-born son. (Exodus 13:2, 12) Everything was done according to the Law of the Lord because Jesus would need to fulfill all the Law in order to fulfill His mission to save mankind.
When they arrived at the temple, a man called Simeon was waiting at the temple. He had been praying and watching for the coming Messiah for many years. The Holy Spirit moved upon him to speak a word of prophesy over Jesus and Mary. “Simeon took Him in his arms and praised God, saying: “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation, which You have prepared in the sight of all people, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to Your people Israel.” (Luke 2:28-32)
This amazing prophesy confirmed to Joseph and Mary the meaning of the name “Jesus”! (“The Lord Saves”) Jesus would save all people, Jew and Gentile, from their sins and bring glory to His people Israel. Jesus was the ‘consolation of Israel’! God revealed this truth to a praying prophet and confirmed His Word to His servants.
Simeon’s final word concerned Mary. “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts if many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.” (Luke 2:33-35) Simeon spoke of the conflict surrounding the child and how that would affect Mary. Those words surely came to pass!
Scripture reading for March 16th: Luke 2:1-35, Psalms 59:1-17, Proverbs 11:14
“Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting or the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. It had bee revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for Him what the custom of the Law required, Simeon took Him in his arms and praised God, saying, “Sovereign Lord, as You have promised, you now dismiss Your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen Your salvation, which You have prepared in the sight of all people, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel.” (Luke 2:25-32)
Simeon was one of the faithful in Israel who walked by faith in God’s promises. Simeon had been looking for the promised Messiah and God had revealed to him that he would not see death before he beheld the desire of his heart. On that day that Joseph and Mary brought Jesus into the temple to be dedicated and circumcised, God moved Simeon to go to the temple as well. When he laid eyes on the Child, Simeon immediately knew that this was the promised Messiah! His heart’s desire had been granted! He knew that this Child would bring salvation to not only Israel, but the Gentiles as well! God always confirms His word and plans by the prophets and He alone knows the end from the beginning!
Simeon spoke a blessing over the parents and gave a word from God to Mary. “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.” Simeon’s word was a blessing and also a word of warning to Mary about the mission of her Son. His life and ministry would be controversial. Some would speak against Him, others would have their hearts opened and revealed. In the end, Mary’s heart would be pierced! What a simple word of insight on the ministry of Jesus! God alone could have revealed that! Simeon was faithful to his Lord!