And, behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him. And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord's Christ. And he came by the Spirit into the temple: and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him after the custom of the law, Then took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said,… (Luke 2:25-28)
This episode of the Birth of Christ fast-forwards past the appearance of the shepherds. The angel had said to the shepherds: For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. (Luke 2:11) And now, it is a month or so later; “To present him to the Lord, and then redeem him by paying five shekels, Numbers 18:15, Numbers 18:16, and to offer those sacrifices appointed by the law. See Luke 2:24. (Clarke)
This offering was for purification. Since Joseph and Mary were poor, they could offer two pigeons or a pair of turtledoves as the purification offering. They traveled six miles from Bethlehem to Jerusalem.
THE LORD'S CHRIST. Sending a baby into extreme poverty to save the world would not have been man’s way of doing it. God takes great delight in making greatness out of nothing. Our celebration of Christmas is about “the Lord’s Christ.” God shared His plan with a nobody in Jerusalem, Simeon. Not from the rooftops nor from the official news channels of King Herod, but to an unimpressive man whose heart was set upon the coming of the Christ. The Magi in far-off Persia were told and they assembled an entourage of camels and servants and treasure and travel money and began a slow journey.
It meant a lot to Simeon. He says:
Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word: For mine eyes have seen thy salvation, Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel (Luke.2:29-32).
This child would be a great divider. He would be a great builder and a great destroyer. He is the last word in truth and therefore in judgment. The smartest of the day would plot to outsmart him only to be snared in their own words. In the end, those who will not have him to rule over them will be destroyed because there is no other alternative. He that hath the Son hath life: and that hath not the Son of God hath not life (1John.5:12). He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him (John.3:36).
And Joseph and his mother marveled at those things which were spoken of him. And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against; (Luke.2:33-34).
Simeon added a word of warning to this proud mother: (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed (Luke 2:35).
That the thoughts ... - This is connected with the preceding verse: “He shall be a sign,” a conspicuous object to be spoken against, that the thoughts of many hearts may be made manifest - that is, that they might show how much they hated holiness.
Nothing so “brings out” the feelings of sinners as to tell them of Jesus Christ. Many treat him with silent contempt; many are ready to gnash their teeth; many curse him; all show how much by nature the heart is opposed to religion, and thus are really, in spite of themselves, fulfilling the scriptures and the prophecies. So true it that “none can say that Jesus is Lord but by the Holy Ghost,” 1Corinthians 12:3 (Barnes).
CIRCUMCISING OF THE CHILD of the child. And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called JESUS, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb. (Luke 2:21) This was about three weeks before Jesus was taken to the Temple to meet Simeon.
Circumcising of all the male babies was a sign between the Lord and the Jewish people. It was required. Furthermore, it was done on the eighth day after the child’s birth (Leviticus 12:2,3).
One day I was sitting on the front porch of a home where a man had just passed away. The local doctor had come in the role of the Coroner to certify the death. We were waiting for the hearse to come and remove the body. The doctor was a Christian and we were discussing the many features of the Law of Moses that employed a knowledge of health and physiology far beyond its day in accurate knowledge.
The doctor’s favorite story was the circumcising of male babies on the eighth day after their birth. He said, “Did you know that Vitamin K, responsible for the clotting of blood, is the highest on the eighth day of the child’s life? Moses didn’t know that! The Jews didn’t know that! God knew that, and He ordered them to circumcise male babies on the eighth day after birth, so the blood would clot quickly after the surgery.” This is approximately what the doctor told me with great excitement forty years ago. I had to tell him, “No, I did not know that.” Did you know that? Ω
Read Through the Bible in a Year
DECEMBER 14, 2017 - THURSDAY
A.M. Amos 1-3 P.M. Revelation 5
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A Good Verse to Memorize:
Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. (Matthew 1:18)
Song for Today:
Hark the Herald Angels Sing & O Come All Ye Faithful (4:15) (Greater Vision Male Trio - Gaither)
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