Monday, April 12, 2021

Note: This will be the last of our three-times-a-week reflections on the Daily Texts. We began these as a way to help us stay connected while stay-at-home orders were in effect. Now, as the vaccination effort advances and we’re able to see the light of increased in-person connection at the end of this long tunnel—thanks be to God!—we’ll be ending these reflections. We, of course, encourage you to continue to make time for reflection on Scripture every day!

“Master, now you are dismissing your servant in peace, according to your word; for my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel.” —Luke 2:29-32

There was a man living in Jerusalem named Simeon, a devoted follower of God. He was led by the Holy Spirit to the temple courts, where he saw Mary and Joseph and the child Jesus. God had revealed to Simeon that he would live to see the promised Messiah, and, when he saw Jesus, he knew this had indeed happened. That’s the context for his words in today’s verses.

What’s amazing about this reaction is that Simeon hadn’t seen Jesus do anything at all. Jesus was just a little baby. But the presence of Jesus was enough for Simeon to rejoice at the good work of God.

Simeon’s words were, of course, correct. In faith, Simeon could see who Jesus was and what Jesus would be for the world. Jesus was salvation from God, revelation to the Gentiles, and the light of glory for God’s beloved people Israel. The fact that Simeon was already proclaiming these truths is a reminder to us that the kingdom of God is not abstract or impersonal. The kingdom of God is just that: God’s kingdom, centered on the person of the Messiah, the King, Jesus of Nazareth.

May we always remember to look with joy and wonder at Jesus, and may we always see in him the salvation of God for this beloved world.

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