Summary: This is the story of Simeon. His wish was that before he died he would see and behold the promised Messiah, the Son of God, who came to save the world from their sins.
Simeon’s Bucket List - The First and Best Gift of Christmas
Characters of Christmas Series – Message One - 2009
Gages Lake Bible Church
Sunday AM, December 6th, 2009
Pastor Daniel Darling
Today we suspend our series “Why We Believe What We Believe” until January as we renew our focus on the Christmas Season. The next few weeks we’ll focus on the Christmas season with a series of messages in my continuing series (from last year) of the Characters of Christmas.
Last year we focused on Mary, Joseph, and the Wise Men. This year we’ll have three messages on these characters:
1) Simeon and Anna
2) The Shepherds
Today, we share a message on Simeon and Anna, two central characters in the story of Christmas.
Intro: (I encourage you to open your Bible’s to Luke 2:22-38)
A couple of years ago, a movie was released with the title “The Bucket List” starring Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson. I didn’t see the movie myself, but I am familiar with the premise.
Jack Nicholson is a rich corporate executive and Morgan Freeman is a mechanic. They meet in the hospital and I believe both are diagnosed with a terminal illness. Nicholson’s character is grumpy and angry about his condition. Freeman’s character is hopeful and positive.
They decide to leave the hospital and embark on a journey to fulfill their “Bucket List.” The Bucket list is the things they want to do before “kicking the bucket.”
Since the movie, people have compiled their various bucket lists—things they want to do before they die. And I suppose we all have a bucket list.
Some would like to climb Mt. Everest
Some would like to find true love and get married.
Some would like to go skydiving.
Some would like to meet a famous person.
Simeon and Anna Had a Bucket List
I don’t know what the Hebrew term for bucket is, but I do know that the two central characters in our Christmas story today had a bucket list. They had one central wish before they died.
Their wish was to see and behold the promised Messiah, the Son of God, come to save the world from their sins.
These two otherwise common, ordinary folks leap onto the pages of the Christmas story in dramatic fashion.
We read their story in Luke’s Gospel, Chapter Two and beginning in Verse 22. I’d like to read the whole narrative. Allow me to read this and I hope you follow along:
And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the Child, His name was called JESUS, which was so named of the angel before He was conceived in the womb.
And when the days of her purification according to the Law of Moses were accomplished, they brought Him to Jerusalem, to present Him to the Lord;
(As it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy to the Lord;)
And to offer a sacrifice according to that which is said in the law of the Lord, A pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.
And, behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him.
And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord's Christ.
And he came by the Spirit into the temple: and when the parents brought in the Child Jesus, to do for Him after the custom of the law,
Then took he Him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said,
Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to Thy word:
For mine eyes have seen Thy Salvation,
Which Thou hast prepared before the face of all people;
A Light to lighten the Gentiles, and the Glory of Thy people Israel.
And Joseph and His mother marveled at those things which were spoken of Him.
And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary His mother, Behold, this Child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against;
(Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.
And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity;
And she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day.
And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of Him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem.