Simeon: The Man who saw the Lord (Luke 2:25-35)
After the birth of Jesus Christ, Joseph and Mary took him to the temple to fulfill the requirements of the law for his consecration to the Lord. Simeon, a devout man, was looking forward to the coming of the Lord.
God had promised him that he will not see death before the Messiah comes.
Simeon was a part of the faithful remnant who looked forward to the coming of the Messiah. His availability in the temple at this time was an answer to one of the prayers of the Israelites, "May I see the consolation of Israel".
The consolation of Israel means the messianic hope.
Simeon was privileged to see the salvation of God that had been promised hundreds of years before the birth of Christ to the nation of Israel.
In Luke 2:29-32, Simeon responded with the last of the Christmas songs. He worshiped and blessed God for keeping his promise and for sending the Messiah. He praised God also for the privilege given to him to see the Lord Jesus Christ. It was not just that Simeon praised God, he also prophesied. Talking to Mary, he described what the child will fulfill on earth. He will cause the fallen and the rising of many.
Once again, what Christ came to do it was emphasized -to die so that humans will be redeemed.
In Simeon's prophecy, the coming of Christ would lead to the fall and rising of many people. Those who stumble will later rise to trust him. Also what Mary will suffer as a mother was revealed by Simeon.
Simeon, in verse 25, was introduced as a righteous and devout man and that sums up who he was -a worshiper and a sincere one at that. He was able to recognize the Saviour when he was brought to the temple.
Simeon's part in the Christmas story is interesting as we realize he is another pointer to prophecy fulfillment. God placed different people at different places as confirmation of the prophecies of the coming of the Lord.
Like Simeon, our call is to be righteous and devout in our daily worship. The celebration of Christmas cannot be complete and acceptable if the life we live is not in consonance with righteousness and devotion to God. It is not a call to be religious like the religious leaders who knew where Jesus was to be born and all other prophecies about him but never believed when it started happening right before them.
Simeon stands as an example of faithful service to the Lord and eager expectation of the coming of the Lord.
As we celebrate Christmas, do you actually believe him well enough to serve him?