ALL THINGS NEW
Read: Luke 2:33-38
33 The child’s father and mother marveled at what was said about him. 34 Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, 35 so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.” 36 There was also a prophet, Anna, the daughter of Penuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, 37 and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying. 38 Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem. (NIV Luke 2:33-38)
Study: The elderly Simeon was full of joy that the Savior had arrived. But he was perceptive, too, and he warned Mary that there were powerful people who would resist even a Savior sent from God. Another elderly saint, Anna, “approached at that very moment and began to praise God.” Simeon warned Mary that she would see many reject Jesus, that pain like a sword would pierce her heart. We can only wonder if she may have remembered his words as she wept at the foot of Jesus’ cross. What helps you trust God and live out God’s purposes when it’s not easy or popular? When has following God brought you pain, as well as positive benefits? Luke called Anna a prophet (verse 36). “Prophet” meant not so much one who tells the future as one who sees present spiritual realities clearly and speaks for God. When has “confirmation from the body of Christ” given you the courage to move forward? When have you been able to encourage another Christ-follower?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, just a baby in a Temple—and yet, just to get there, you were hurling yourself from the glory of heaven into a dark, dangerous world. And you did it to rescue and redeem me from that broken world—thank you. Amen.