The Spirit led Simeon to the temple. Mary and Joseph went to the temple to do what the Jewish law said they must do. They brought the baby Jesus to the temple. Simeon held the baby in his arms and thanked God: "Now, Lord (God), you can let me, your servant, die in peace like you said. I have seen with my own eyes how you will save your people. Now all people can see your plan. He (Jesus) is a light to show your way to the non-Jewish people. He will bring honor to your people, Israel (the Jews)."
— Luke 2:27-32
"You can't teach an old dog new tricks!" It's one of those "truisms" that many accept as an excuse for becoming staid and cynical as we age. I don't know about you, but I'm no dog! I believe I can change—or better yet, I believe that God's Spirit can transform me. Here is old Simeon, old eyes and all, and he is the one who gets to see God's new Light. Why? Because Simeon believed God would do something great in his day, and he kept on believing even when he was old. God still longs to do glorious things in our day, even if we are old! Keep believing, listening, trusting, and following, and most of all, keep expecting! God is faithful and he will surprise you with glorious things.
O Father, my tender Shepherd, please do not let my passion dim or my faith grow tired as I grow older. I want to live a vibrant life of faith, expecting and experiencing your great acts of mercy and power all the way to my dying day. In Jesus' name I pray this. Amen.
Today's Verses in Context
When the baby was eight days old, he was circumcised, and he was named Jesus. This name was given by the angel before the baby began to grow inside Mary. The time came for Mary and Joseph to do the things the law of Moses taught about being made pure. Joseph and Mary brought Jesus to Jerusalem so they could present him to the Lord (God). It is written in the law of the Lord (God): "When a mother's first baby is a boy, he shall be called 'special for the Lord.'" The law of the Lord also says that the people must give a sacrifice : "You must sacrifice two doves or two young pigeons." So Joseph and Mary went to Jerusalem to do this. A man named Simeon lived in Jerusalem. He was a good man that truly worshiped God. Simeon was waiting for the time when God would come to help Israel (the Jews). The Holy Spirit was in him. The Holy Spirit told Simeon that he would not die before he saw the Christ from the Lord (God). The Spirit led Simeon to the temple. Mary and Joseph went to the temple to do what the Jewish law said they must do. They brought the baby Jesus to the temple. Simeon held the baby in his arms and thanked God: "Now, Lord (God), you can let me, your servant, die in peace like you said. I have seen with my own eyes how you will save your people. Now all people can see your plan. He (Jesus) is a light to show your way to the non-Jewish people. He will bring honor to your people, Israel (the Jews)." Jesus' father and mother were amazed at what Simeon said about him. Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, "Many Jews will fall and many will rise because of this boy. He will be a sign (proof) from God that some people will not accept. The things that people think in secret will be made known. And the things that will happen will make your heart very sad." Anna, a prophetess, was there at the temple. She was from the family of Phanuel in the Asher family group. Anna was very old. She had been married for seven years. Then her husband died and she lived alone. Shewas now 84 years old. Anna was always at the temple; she never left. She worshiped God by fasting and praying day and night. Anna was there when Joseph and Mary came to the temple. She praised God and talked about Jesus to all the people who were waiting for God to free Jerusalem. Joseph and Mary finished doing all the things that the law of the Lord commanded. Then they went home to Nazareth, their own town in Galilee. The little boy (Jesus) was growing. He became stronger and wiser. God's blessings were with him.
Related Scripture Readings
Good people are like cedar trees of Lebanon planted in the Lord's temple. Good people are like budding palm trees blossoming in the courtyard of the temple of our God. Even when they are old, they will continue producing fruit like young, healthy trees.
"Family of Jacob, listen to me! All you people from Israel that are still alive, listen! I have been carrying you. I have carried you since the time you were in your mother's body. I carried you when you were born, and I will carry you when you become old. Your hair will become gray, and I will still carry you, because I made you. I will continue to carry you and I will save you.
"Now, the Lord has kept me alive 45 years—like he said he would do. During that time we all wandered in the desert. Now, here I am, 85 years old. I am still as strong today as I was the day Moses sent me out. I am as ready to fight as I was then. So now, give me the hill country that the Lord promised me that day long ago. At that time, you heard that the strong Anakite people lived there. And the cities were very big and well protected. But now, maybe the Lord will be with me, and I will take that land like the Lord said." Joshua blessed Caleb son of Jephunneh. Joshua gave him the city of Hebron as his own.