Luke 2:25-32 :
Behold, there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon. This man was righteous and devout, looking for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. He came in the Spirit into the temple. When the parents brought in the child, Jesus, that they might do concerning him according to the custom of the law, then he received him into his arms, and blessed God, and said,
“Now you are releasing your servant, Master,
according to your word, in peace;
for my eyes have seen your salvation,
which you have prepared before the face of all peoples;
a light for revelation to the nations,
and the glory of your people Israel.”
Here we read about a “righteous and devout” man named Simeon that was caused to know by the Holy Spirit that he would not “see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ.” It is very interesting to me that the Holy Spirit was capable of influencing people before Jesus had come in such a personal way. Notice that it says that “the Holy Spirit was on him.” This is typical of how the Holy Spirit is described before Acts 2. After the events of Acts 2, we discover that the Holy Spirit actually comes into people and does not just rest upon them. This is the time in which we live. God has an intimate relationship with His children by the Holy Spirit that now comes in to stay with each one of us.
Notice how the Holy Spirit made it clear, somehow, that Simeon should go to the temple right at the moment that Mary and Joseph brought Jesus there. This is very typical of the Holy Spirit’s guidance. It is often difficult for us to understand what He is doing before the events take place. How this works is a mystery to me and I think that this is because the Holy Spirit is God and God’s ways are much higher than mine. I can’t expect to understand how it works at all, really. What I can do is trust in the Holy Spirit and know that what He wants is what is the absolute best.
Let’s look for a moment at what the Holy Spirit said through Simeon as he held the Son of God. Simeon was thrilled that he had been given the privilege of seeing God’s salvation with his own eyes. Most people didn’t get to see Him but Simeon was aware of the precious nature of the event and praised God for it. I believe that we all have precious events that happen in our lives that God gives to only us. This gives us an opportunity to praise Him personally. This is especially good to remember when we are prone to complain about something. We should let the truth of what God has done for us fill our minds and give thanks for those things instead.
Notice that the Holy Spirit made it known to Simeon that God’s salvation would be for Gentiles and Jews. Notice that the Holy Spirit clearly says that Jesus would be the “glory” of Israel not the end of it. This is one of those places where God tells us that He isn’t done with Israel yet.