I have never been too bothered about Lent, but this year, it is different. I am using Lent for Everyone by NT Wright as well as other books on Lent. Wright has some interesting points regarding these verses: “Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. And he came in the Spirit into the temple, and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him according to the custom of the Law” (Luke 2:25–27 ESV)
By the time Jesus came into the temple with Mary and Joseph, it was perhaps at the pick of its daily activities. Many people surrounded them, some of them worshipping, others selling things outside the temple, and many other people begging. Wright says that “You are almost as alarmed as the parents are when he takes the child from them, but his movement and his embrace is as gentle and firm as the love of God. He has seen something nobody else has. He has been praying and waiting for this moment all his life, and now it’s come. This is the Messiah; he’s seen him with his own eyes; now he can die in peace”. I love this observation.
Among all the people gathering in or near the Temple, how did this man, Simeon, knew, perceived, and went to Jesus? He spoke prophetically into the life and ministry of Christ. Only when he had the blessings of seeing Christ, he completed his mission.
Like him, how an older man had the courage, the strength, and the spiritual stamina to carry on and not give up until he finally saw Christ for the first and last time on this earth.
Well, we know three things about this man were:
- The Holy Spirit was upon him.
- He heard the Holy Spirit promised, The Spirit revealed to him. That is God’s Word.
- The Holy Spirit led him.
The question I asked myself is this one: How do I get to a place where the Holy Spirit is upon me daily? I know he is in me, but how can I let the Spirit reign in my life so that I can receive God’s Word and ultimately be led by him?
Well, there is something about Simeon’s life that I need to pay attention to! He was righteous – He understood free grace. He was devout – He was committed to spending time in God’s Word and worship. He was obedient – He was walked to Jesus and spoke to him.
His mission was over, but his legacy lives on. It is here to inspire us. I love that, and I want that!