Jesus' parents were amazed at what was being said about him [by Simeon]. Then Simeon blessed them, and he said to Mary, the baby's mother, "This child is destined to cause many in Israel to fall, and many others to rise. He has been sent as a sign from God, but many will oppose him. As a result, the deepest thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your very soul."
— Luke 2:33-35 NLT
While Jesus came to bring goodness and light, he also came to a world infected by sin and enslaved to the principles of darkness, decay, and death. His life was not about his ease and escape, but about decision, confrontation, and truth. Darkness had to be driven away. Decay had to be destroyed. Death had to be defeated. Accomplishing these objectives meant taking on everything the powers of this world had used to maintain their hold on the hearts of people. Yes, liberation brought joy to the rescued, but it meant a high cost for those who wanted to preserve the status quo and did not accept the liberation. Jesus came to force us to decide. He came as Lord, not as a sweet, do-gooder pal. Only when we surrender our hearts to him as Lord does he become our friend and brother. There is no middle ground. He is not just a good guy, come to do good things and to make good people happy. He is Savior, Lord, and King. All pretenders, and their lackeys, opposed him. Our joy was Mary's pain. Our victory was Jesus' agony. Our hope was God's sacrifice. So let Simeon's words remind you that you must make a decision about this Jesus. There is no middle ground or middle emotion.
Give me the courage, O LORD God, to choose Jesus completely. I want him to be my Lord as well as my Savior, my King as well as my friend, my Master as well as my brother. Thank you for paying such a huge price to make him Savior, friend, and brother. I offer my heart to him as Lord, King, and Master. In the name of my Lord, Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen.
Related Scripture Readings
- Matthew 10:32-39
- Joshua 24:14-15
- 2 Corinthians 5:9-10
Other Devotionals from Heartlight for Thursday, February 2, 2023
About This Devotional
What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.
What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware and is available in book form.
Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
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