Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Simeon's Song

Christmas is the celebration of Christ's birth. Though it has been commercialized and brought into the cultural mainstream, its religious roots keep large groups of people from participating. For example, Jehovah's Witnesses, Muslims, and Jews all abstain from observing Christmas and celebrating the wonderful gift "wrapped in swaddling clothes" (Luke 2:12).

Forty days after Jesus's birth (cf. Leviticus 12:2-4), Mary and Joseph "brought him to Jerusalem, to present him to the Lord" (Luke 2:22) and to offer a sacrifice in accordance with the Law (cf. Luke 2:24; Leviticus 12:8). Upon their arrival at the Temple, a priest named Simeon met them. ReadLuke 2:25-35.

God had revealed to Simeon "he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord's Christ" (v. 26) and likewise revealed to him that the infant Jesus was the Christ (cf. v.27). Taking the child "up in his arms" (v. 28), he began to sing. Though his song ends with some sorrow filled remarks to Mary (cf. vv. 34, 35), it is essentially a hymn of praise. He thanks God for keeping his promise and allowing him to see Christ (cf. vv. 28-30) and for what Christ would accomplish (cf. vv. 31-33). Jesus is God's salvation for all people (cf. vv. 29, 30)—the glory of Jews, who were looking for the Messiah, and the light to the Gentiles, who were not.

Regardless of what those around you profess to believe or not believe, it's important for you to remember that Jesus was born and died for them. It is by faith in the shed blood of Jesus alone that we are cleansed from our sin and brought into the Father's presence (cf. John 14:6). Christmas is for everyone because Jesus is for everyone.

Our main concern at CrossPoint Church is introducing people to Jesus Christ and encouraging others (that's you!) to do the same. Who do you know that doesn't know Jesus? Why not make a list and pray for each person daily throughout 2016, asking God to lighten his or her heart (cf. v. 32).

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