As interesting and captivating as the people described in the Bible can be, I’ve only found myself ever wanting to have an experience like two of them. The first is Joseph, and truth be told, I don’t really want to have to go through what he went through. Rather, what I admire was his optimism and the trust he displayed through it all. The other person I’ve often found myself drawn to has just a small part to play in the Christmas story. His name is Simeon and he is referred to as being “righteous and devout” as well as having “the Holy Spirit on him”. What a reputation! It says in Luke 2:26 “It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah.” 

Simeon was waiting for “the consolation of Israel” (that’s a powerful phrase) and God found favor in him to let him know that he would see it. I think it is cool to have been given an insight from the Lord like that and then to have the sensitivity from the Holy Spirit to be able to notice that this little baby, who was being brought to the temple to be consecrated to the Lord, was special.

Babies can be cute, or babies can be squishy, or chunky, but it is difficult to imagine seeing a baby and seeing fulfillment; seeing a baby and seeing what will be accomplished through that baby one day. Simeon, however, is satisfied:

Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying: Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you may now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all nations: a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of your people Israel. Luke 2:28-32.

He saw salvation in this baby. And more, Simeon had been waiting for Israel’s deliverance, and in Jesus, he sees salvation that is visible to all nations and is a light of revelation to the Gentiles (non-Jews) too.

Let us pray that we will have eyes that can see, and also be, a light for revelation to all nations too.

John Riley
Junior High Pastor

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