Luke 2:25-35 – Simeon’s Adoration of Jesus Christ
Simeon was a “righteous and devout” man who was in Jerusalem. We know he was both righteous and devout because the scripture says plainly so. However, we also know he was righteous and devout because the text speaks of the Holy Spirit being “upon” him. It says that he was led by the Spirit; that the Spirit revealed things to him. The Holy Spirit of God doesn’t have this kind of relationship with a man unless he’s righteous and devout. Now, was Simeon righteous and devout of his own power and will. Of course not. No one is. This is true throughout all of Scripture. However, in an effort to show just how big of a deal the birth of Jesus Christ was (and is) God makes Simeon a righteous man and he was chosen for this event.
Joseph and Mary were righteous and devout as well. They were following the letter of the law as completely as it could be followed regarding their newborn son. They took him on the 8th day of his life to be circumcised. They were concerned with the purification of Mary after she gave birth. They brought Jesus at the right time up to Jerusalem to present him at the temple. They took very seriously this new task that God had laid before them.
At the same time they brought him to the temple to be presented, the Spirit was leading Simeon. God the Spirit had told Simeon by some means that he would not die until he saw the Christ; the Messiah. Simeon evidently was very interested in the matter. More than that he had a gut wrenching longing deep within to see the Messiah come. He waited to see the prophecies of old to be fulfilled and for the Savior to come. This seems to be something that he lived everyday in light of. It speaks as if Simeon spent everyday on the edge of his seat waiting and hoping. He was a true believer. Unlike the religious crowds, such as the Pharisees and Sadducees, Simeon knew the prophecies, he believed them, and longed for their fulfillment.
Simeon was led to the temple while “in the Spirit”. This had to be a most exciting moment for him. He had likely waited years; possibly decades to see the promised Messiah and King come. And the day had finally come! It was finally happening. I wonder what it must’ve felt like when he was on his way to the temple that day. He must’ve had butterflies in his stomach. There must’ve been adrenaline coursing through his body as every step brought him closer to seeing his King face to face.
Then it Happened!
In he walked. And the Messiah, the Savior, the King of kings and Lord of lords, the Creator himself in his mother’s arms. He rushed to them and “took him up in his arms and blessed God”. Words alone couldn’t do this moment justice. Simeon’s wildest dreams had come true. He says to God, “Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace”.
Someday you and I will meet our maker. There will actually be a moment when all the faith will be sight. There will be a moment, whether after death or when Christ comes back, that we will see him face to face. Can you imagine? Can you even fathom it? When we see him there will be no mistaking who he is. He will not be cloaked in the skin of a beautiful baby. He will be obvious. John saw a picture in Revelation, chapter one of Jesus Christ in all his heavenly glory. And it is both terrifying and magnificent.
12 Then I turned to see the voice that was speaking to me, and on turning I saw seven golden lampstands, 13 and in the midst of the lampstands one like a son of man, clothed with a long robe and with a golden sash around his chest. 14 The hairs of his head were white, like white wool, like snow. His eyes were like a flame of fire, 15 his feet were like burnished bronze, refined in a furnace, and his voice was like the roar of many waters. 16 In his right hand he held seven stars, from his mouth came a sharp two-edged sword, and his face was like the sun shining in full strength.The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Re 1:12–16). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.
Oh how I long for the day when my faith shall be sight as the popular hymn states. How wonderful it will be when we see Jesus face to face. Words cannot capture the glory and adoration that will pour from the hearts and mouths of the Saints on that day. When the effects of sin are forever gone; when the bringer of death meets his destruction.
I know. The text above seems rather frightening. More scary than wonderful even. Well, John thought so too. Just after this in verse 17 John says that when he saw Jesus in all his glory he “fell at his feet as though dead”. John was paralyzed with fear. There’s something about God’s glory and the weight of is presence that makes people shutter with fear. We become utterly afraid. However, the very first words out of the mouth of Christ in this vision are, “Fear not”.
For the unbeliever, you have every right and reason to fear when you read this. There is a Hell. There is eternal punishment for your rebellion against the one and only God. This is absolutely true.
But for the believer, Oh how we wait on the edge of our seats for the indescribably glorious moment when we will be physically face to face with our Savior and King; Jesus Christ.