Summary: #7 in Walking in the Spirit series. It’s also a tie-in with Narnia, about looking forward to Jesus coming. It uses Simeon as scripture basis.
Luke 2:25-35 – Narnia: When Aslan Comes in Sight
Tonight I’d like to continue on in our series on walking in the Spirit (#7 by now). In fact, the Bible says that the Holy Spirit was upon this man who happens to be our main topic for the evening. We are going to read Luke 2:25-33.
Now, in addition to continuing on in our walking in the Spirit series, it also fits nicely with something I spoke about last week, that is, the Chronicles of Narnia. Last week we ate chocolate – Turkish delight – and looked at the dangers of sin, with truths from the Bible and highlighted by parts from the book, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.
Let me go back and refresh your memory. Narnia is another world, separate from ours, and the doorway to it is a big walk-in closet. Four children, brothers and sisters – Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy Pevensie – all stumble into this place called Narnia. Now, the climate in Narnia is winter. It’s always winter and never Christmas, a very bleak place to be. That’s because the land is under the spell of the evil White Witch Jadis. She has kept the land under her icy spell for very long, and the Narnians have grown tired of her magic. They are longing to be set free from Jadis’ spell.
Well, help is on the way. The 4 children find a talking beaver, or rather, he found them. Mr.Beaver calls them to his side, whispering to them. And he says these words: “They say Aslan is on the move – perhaps has already landed.”
Now, I’d like to read to you from p67-68 from LWW, showing us the different reactions to the name “Aslan”.
Well, after this the 4 children go to Mr. and Mrs.Beaver’s house for supper. After supper, the beavers begin to tell the tale of Aslan. They say, “Aslan is on the move.” Aslan is the King and the Lord of the whole wood, Narnia, but he isn’t always there. But the word is, Aslan is back, or at least on his way back.
And he would fix the situation in Narnia. The Witch, whose favorite tactic is turning people and creatures to stone, can’t do that to Aslan. There’s an old saying, “Wrong will be right, when Aslan comes in sight, At the sound of his roar, sorrows will be no more, When he bares his teeth, winter meets its death, And when he shakes his mane, we shall have spring again.”
You see, Aslan is a lion. He’s the King of the Beasts. He’s a great Lion. Now, Susan asks the beavers, “Is he safe?” Mrs.Beaver says, “If there’s anyone who can appear before Aslan without their knees knocking, they’re either braver than most or else just sill.”
Lucy asks, “Then he isn’t safe?”
And Mr.Beaver says this famous line about Aslan: “Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.”
This is the King. Certainly not safe, but most certainly good. And when he arrives, he will dispel the winter and bring in the spring and break the Witch’s curse and bring new life.
This sounds a lot like Simeon’s attitude in our scripture passage tonight. Now, we don’t know a lot about Simeon. Apparently there was nothing special about Simeon that qualified him to take up the baby Jesus in his arms and bless Him. As far as we know, he wasn’t an ordained religious leader, and he had no credentials or special authority.
What we know is that he was simply a “just and devout” man who had a close walk with the Holy Spirit. His name means, “God hears”, and it seems to fit who Simeon was. You see, God honors those who engage in lifetimes of quiet prayer and constant watchfulness. Simeon was a man of patient faith, yet his wait for the Messiah must have seemedas if it would never end. He likely had a lot of opportunities for doubt. After all, over the years, would-be Messiahs sounded false alarms in the land. Many people over the years would rise up from among the people, call themselves God’s gift to mankind, and try to overthrow the ruling government. They never succeeded.
So here was Simeon, slowly patiently waiting for God’s saving power to come into action. And somehow, when Simeon saw the baby Jesus, he just knew, “That’s the One!” He and the Holy Spirit had a special relationship, so when the Spirit told him the news, Simeon knew and believed. The Spirit prompted him to go to the Temple, and there was the Messiah, all wrapped up as a baby.
So Simeon praised God for answered promises, and Simeon said he was now ready to die. That reminds me of Paul who said, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” Paul was ready to go, and so was Simeon.