Waiting in Faith
In some ways we can relate to believers at the end of the OT era. They had been waiting a few thousand years for the Messiah & we have been waiting 2 thousand years for Christ to come again.
Heb. 11:1. The HS kept hope & anticipation vibrant in their hearts just as He does in ours.
Remember that after conception, Jesus was born & grew naturally (Luk. 2:7); “the baby”- βρέφος (Luk. 2:16); “the child Jesus” (Luk. 2:27).
I. Jesus is Brought by His Parents (Luk. 2:22-24)
A. The Law required purification of a mother
After birth of son = 7 days uncleanness + 33 days purifica-tion (Lev. 12:1-4). The ceremony involved sacrificing an animal at the temple - poor people sacrificed 2 turtledoves or pigeons since they did not have & couldn’t afford a lamb.
B. The Law required redemption of the 1st born child
All 1st born creatures belonged to God – either sacrificed or redeemed with money (Ex. 13). Redemption price = 5 shekels Joseph & Mary loved God & obeyed His law (1Jn. 5:3).
The Creator of mankind & author of the Law humbles Himself to be helplessly handled by parents & subjected to the very law that He gave for the good of mankind (Gal. 4:4). The author of language so humbles Himself that as a 40 day old infant, He cannot speak…
II. Jesus is Revealed to Simeon (Luk. 2:25-35)
A. The Holy Spirit was in control of Simeon (Luk. 2:25-27)
The Holy Spirit has been working in Simeon – granting grace to wait for God’s Deliverer, revealing longevity of life & timing for him to act… God never leaves to the plan of redemption to chance; He chooses, reveals, convicts, leads…
B. The Holy Spirit enabled Simeon (Luk. 2:28-35)
The Holy Spirit enabled Simeon to take hold of God’s Deliverer, to bless God, prophesy the truth about Jesus & bless Mary & Joseph. The Holy Spirit prepared Simeon to die in peace with God (as he had lived). No one should ever want to die before you have seen & believed Jesus in your heart. Only then are you ready to both live & die (Phil. 1:21).
This 40 day old infant is ordained & appointed by God to save Jews & Gentiles; He is appointed for the salvation of some & judgment of others; and Mary will experience grief & anguish in her heart because of the awful ways that Jesus will suffer… God is revealing the Truth about this baby & this child…
III. Jesus is Praised by Anna (Luk. 2:36-38)
A. Jesus is worth the sacrifice (Luk. 2:36-37)
Married & widowed at a very young age (-30 yrs. old); she had other option – remarriage, rejoin family, occupation… But she chose to fully devote her youth, talents & skills to serve the Lord in the place of worship. Just one look made all the sacrifice worth while; just being in His presence…
B. Jesus is worthy of praise (Luk. 2:38)
Thank God for salvation, for keeping you faithful, for keeping His promises, sending the Savior, opening your eyes & heart. Go tell others who are waiting for deliverance; go tell them the good news…
God uses ordinary, holy & humble believers regardless of your age or gender. Mary & Joseph were very young, Simeon & Anna were older saints. Simeon & Anna (like Mary, Joseph & shepherds) didn’t have a high social or religious status. But they did have high & holy character qualities… (1Co. 1:26f) Learn from their names: Mary – rebellious or stubborn, Joseph – increasing or adding, Simeon – hearing & obeying, Anna – grace. God uses young/old, male/female, have been stubborn or rebellious in the past, increasing in blessings/poor, quick to hear & obey and full of God’s grace – God uses ordinary, holy & humble believers just like you… There is one other name in this story – Jesus – salvation or Savior. They were waiting for Jesus to come the 1st time to save them from the penalty & power of sin; we are waiting for Him to come the 2nd time in great glory & majesty to save us from the very presence of sin. If you have seen & believe on Jesus in your heart, you are ready to live & die; ready to trust & obey, wait & take action, praise & prophesy, sacrifice & be blessed, give thanks & tell others...
Therefore, wait for God in faith my brother/sister. Stay faithful in whatever God has assigned your hands to do. The Savior has come and He is coming again soon!