from Beverly Abajian
Luke 2: 25-32 “And behold, there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon, and this man was just and devout, waiting for the Consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him.” And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ.” So he came by the Spirit into the temple. And when the parents brought in the Child Jesus, to do for Him according to the custom of the law, “ “ he took Him up in his arms and blessed God and said:
“ ‘ Lord, now You are letting Your servant depart in peace, according to Your word;” “ For my eyes have seen Your salvation” “ which You have prepared before the face of all peoples,” “ A light to bring revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of Your people Israel.’”
Luke 2: 36-38 - “Now there was one, Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was of a great age, and had lived with a husband seven years from her virginity;” “and this woman was a widow of about eighty-four years, who did not depart from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day.” “ And coming in that instant she gave thanks to the Lord, and spoke of Him to all those who looked for redemption in Jerusalem.”
Before Jesus, people worshipped and prayed in a set place. The Temple. Now we worship Him in Spirit and in Truth. We can abide in Him any place anywhere. So we also can be Simeons’ and Annas’. What sets them apart is they were not looking at the circumstances of life ( Rome was a cold cruel place to be), they were not bemoaning the past. But they were looking ahead with expectancy of the coming of the Messiah who would be their Savior and Deliverer. They spent time in the Word ( Torah and the Prophets) They were acquainted with the Messianic promises and knew that He would be their only Hope . Had they been caught up in their own personal circumstances, the politics of the day, the flesh ( they fasted), they may not have been in the Temple the day that Jesus was brought to be dedicated. They could of missed it. Aren’t there times when we get preoccupied and we ‘miss it’? They stayed the course. We must also stay the course. We also have the world, the flesh and the devil to contend with.
How did they know that this Child was the Messiah? I believe the Holy Spirit revealed it to them. Can you imagine their excitement!!! This is the moment they have been waiting for. Simeon had the hope he would see the Messiah before he died, as the Holy Spirit had previously revealed it to him. ( Verse 26)
The pinnacle of Simeon’s discourse is verse 32 where he paraphrases Isaiah 9:2 and Isaiah 42:6.
Isaiah 9:2 - “ The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light;…:”
Isaiah 42:6 - “ ‘ I, the LORD, have called You in righteousness , and will hold Your hand; I will keep You and give You as a covenant to the people, as a light to the Gentiles,’”
Isaiah 42 is alluding the Messiah and referring to Him in verse 6.
Simeon knew the Scriptures and mediated on them. And he waited on the LORD for His promises to come to pass. And Anna too was faithful to the LORD. She stayed close to Him, so she too got to see the Child of the Promise. Let us follow suit.
We do not know what the future holds, but we know Who holds the future.