Summary: At Jesus’ circumcision we see that already He’s having an incredible impact...truly all things are made new. This New Year’s Message focuses on what Simeon did right in his response to the Messiah’s coming. Very helpful outline. Powerpoint at website.
8 Days After Christmas
PowerPoint for this and all our sermons available at http://gbcdecatur.org/sermons.html
Today is the 8th day after Christmas, as it was the 8th in the temple in our text. This is when circumcision would take place, and the naming of the child. Jesus’ name had already been shared by the angel, but now again…He’s the God/Man!
He who offered living water later said, “I Thirst”
-The Bread of Life later fasted in the desert 40 days.
-He who redeemed us was later sold for 30 pcs. of silver.
-The King of Kings later paid His taxes.
-He who dried tears of others also wept at the tomb of Lazarus.
Now, He who is God is going thru the motions as man.
v. 22 In those days a son ceremonially was not considered his parent’s possession until after the purification was complete, then he was bought back for 5 shekels of silver…a picture of redemption!
v. 24 A picture of condescension: for the family of the Lamb of God couldn’t afford a lamb…they were allowed acc’d to Lev. 12, if poor, to bring turtledoves or pigeons.
Then there’s Simeon: he had been looking for the Messiah.
This promise was fulfilled in
1. He believed the Word of God. [OT]
v. 25 And we have every reason to believe the NT promise of His return!
MacArthur said “I shall return”, and he did, and why is it we don’t live each day thinking about Christ’s imminent return, but rather OUR worries?
He believed the Word of God…
2. He was led by the Spirit of God
26-27 We should let the Lord lead us…and this will never conflict w/ #1, above!
Historians say Simeon was 113 when this promise was fulfilled! [senior saints should never retire on God!]
Joke: old couple out on porch. He asked her for some ice cream, she was gone 30 minutes! Came back w/ scrambled eggs??? “you dumb woman…I said over easy!”
3. He obeyed the will of God.
v. 27 he came when prompted…obeyed both the Word and the Spirit!
“Doing the will of God is not like taking Castor Oil!” It’s a pleasant thing, even when it doesn’t make sense, or isn’t the easiest way out…it’s always right to do right! But we struggle against God’s will oftentimes, because we are “self-willed!”
But God wants us to know and do His will…more than we do!
That was all practical, now here’s the doctrinal truths:
Look at the prayer Simeon prayed--“Song of Simeon”:
v. 28-35 1 of 5 Christmas songs sung by Elizabeth, Mary, Zacharias, the Angels, and here’s Simeon’s…
1. Song of Salvation.
v. 30 Back to v. 29…he was ready to “depart” [die] because he had seen salvation.
Phil. 1:23—Paul had a “desire to depart” this life!
Depart in gk. “apoluo” has 4 descriptive pictures which will be a blessing to us:
1 Release of a prisoner from jail…world, this flesh, etc. Rev. 21 says there will be no more pain, sorrow, grief, tears! [glorified body!]
2 Hauling in of the anchor of a ship, and setting sail! As a ship disappears over the horizon there’s a group left behind saying, “there she goes”…and there’s another group waiting on the other side proclaiming: “here she comes!”
3 Taking down of a tent. 2 Cor. 5:1 says this tabernacle will be dissolved [house not made w/ hands!] A tent is a temporary structure subject to the elements and to decay!
4 Divorce. Making it official to the world and the flesh… “I’m leaving you permanently…for someone else!”
It was a song of salvation…
2. Song of Revelation
v. 30-32 it says to the Gentiles, and then to the Jews?
Obviously he was inspired here, speaking prophecy: the jews would reject the gospel, the gentiles would accept it, and then the 2nd coming would occur.
The Jews said, this Messiah is not what I expected/not to my liking…and many Gentiles say the same today…and they still name the Name of Jesus, but only approach Him cafeteria style. It’s “another Jesus” they serve, one more to their liking!
We should want nothing less than God’s best for us, taking Jesus just as He is, giving ourselves, “Just As I Am!”
v. 34-35 There’s a stone, a sign, and a sword…
· A Stone—“set for the fall” He who was to be the chief cornerstone became a stumbling stone [block]! The Pharisees said, “we be not born of fornication!” [didn’t want to believe]
Jesus infuriated the Jewish leaders because He claimed to be the “stone which the builders rejected.” This is a reference to the building of Solomon’s Temple.
It took 30,000 workmen over seven years to complete the temple. According to I Kings 6 all the stones were quarried far away from the building site, so there was no sound of hammering heard there. Jewish tradition says one day the building superintendent saw an unusual stone being delivered. Because it was cut in an odd shape, he thought it was flawed. He had it rolled away into the Kidron Valley where it lay untouched and unnoticed. Years later, the builder sent word to the quarry that he was ready for the main corner stone. The quarry master came and reported, “Why, I had that stone delivered years ago. When they began to search they discovered the discarded stone in the valley was the main cornerstone. It was covered with debris and moss. It took many men working hard to raise the massive stone out of the valley. When they raised it and set it, it fit perfectly! The chief cornerstone was the very rock they rejected.