“Anticipation”… What does that word bring to your mind? A Carly Simon song? A ketchup bottle?
Think of the excited anticipation if a family dog hearing the car door slam in the garage… and waiting for “someone” to come through the door; his tail wagging, his eyes fixed. He is anticipating spending some quality time with an actual human being!
Humans are also creatures of anticipation. Anticipation has proven to benefit our health and our sense of well-being.
But, anticipation can also have a positive effect on your walk with God!
Simeon is a part of Jesus’ first temple visit… the Testimony of Simeon
I. His Reassurance… Luke 2:25,26
Luke describes Simeon as a righteous man filled with the Holy Spirit. Others might have described him as a “crazy old man”! But, Simeon had been given a promise by God… and that’s all that mattered to him. So, Simeon watched… anticipating.
Simeon was an old man, but he had been promised by God he would still be alive when Jesus was born.
Simeon had lived a long life of such close fellowship with God that the Holy Spirit had told him he would not die until he had seen the Messiah! Imagine the anticipation that must have been Simeon’s every day!!
40 days after Jesus was born, Simeon got his wish Joseph and Mary came to the temple to present Jesus to God, as was the custom with every firstborn male.
II. His Recognition… Luke 2:27-32
Then, one day, Simeon heard the Holy Spirit… urging him to go to the temple. His heart probably pounded as he thought about what that might mean. “This has to be the day!”
When Simeon saw the baby Jesus, he knew immediately this was the One he had been waiting for. He reacted with a mixture of joy, contentment, and relief at the fulfillment of the prophecy that had been given to him.
You can receive God’s blessings when, like Simeon, you listen to God… and believe Him… and wait expectantly for Him to keep His promises.
III. His Revelation
– Concerning the Messiah… Luke 2:33,34
– Concerning the Mother… Luke 2:35
Overcome with emotion, Simeon took the Child and rejoiced that this little bundle of joy would bring salvation – not just for his people, but for the Gentiles, too!
Simeon must have known his Scriptures… Simeon didn’t just know the parts of the prophecy that meant good news; he knew the darker side, too. He remembered the suffering that would be part of this salvation… on this Child, and on those who followed Him.
But, as certain and unsettling as his words may have sounded, Simeon was not troubled. He knew this was all part of God’s plan. And, having been blessed to see the great Deliverer face-to-face, the elderly prophet was prepared to die in peace.
Waiting for God to fulfill a promise or answer a prayer can sometimes be a real test of our endurance and faith. We’re tempted to stop praying… or to settle for something less than God’s best plan for us.
Don’t lose confidence in God’s promises each passing day. Your wait may not be as long as Simeon’s, but when you see it fulfilled you will have reason to rejoice as he did!
* God is faithful! He keeps His promises!!
You can read Simeon’s story in Luke 2:25-35.