Summary: Christmas reminds us that God remembered to save sinners.
Title: Simeon’s Song
Text: Luke 2:25-35
Truth: Christmas reminds us that God remembered to save sinners.
Aim: I want them to understand and receive God’s salvation.
Life? What kind of salvation did God provide sinners?
There is something comforting about the many lives in Scripture of which we know very little. There was more to the story of the woman who knew if she could just touch the fringe of Jesus’ robe she would get well. There was more to tell about the woman who anointed Jesus with a jar of perfume, or the thief who hung beside Jesus on the cross. Yet, we are told only that they will be remembered. And they are. However insignificant their lives were to society, they have been captured in the pages of history as people worth remembering, people who had a role in the story of God on earth—people remembered by God when multitudes wished them forgotten. It is a comforting reminder that our fleeting lives are infinitely significant because we are remembered by the One who sees our hearts and hears our prayers long before others notice and long after they have stopped listening. Simeon is another one of those characters that we know little about, but he played a part in the story of God on earth, and he is remembered (Jill Carattini).
We are told his name and address in v. 25. I have always thought Simeon was an old man, and he may have been. But that is an assumption I drew from his statement that God promised him he would not die until he’d seen the Messiah, and now he is willing to die. We’re told he lives in Jerusalem and then Luke gives us a four-fold description of his character.
He is righteous and devout. Righteousness describes his character and devout describes his attitude toward God. In other words, Simeon treated people right. He took God seriously. His commitment to God governed the way he related to people and to God. He was a godly man.
He was waiting eagerly and expectantly for the “consolation of Israel.” One of the names the rabbis had for the Messiah was the consolation of Israel or Comforter. They believed when the Messiah arrived he would comfort Israel after all her suffering.
We’re told the Holy Spirit is upon him. This is a tremendous characteristic of Simeon. Before Pentecost and the amazing gift of the Holy Spirit coming to indwell the personality of every believer, the Holy Spirit would come upon certain individuals to empower them to accomplish some task. He did this for the prophets. What the Holy Spirit did for Moses and David, He did for Simeon.
Lastly, we are told that God revealed to him that he would not die before he saw the Messiah, the Savior of Israel and the nations. What follows is the perfect synchronization of God’s promise. At the very moment that Joseph and Mary bring Jesus to the temple to perform the requirements of the law for a son on the eighth day, the Holy Spirit persuades Simeon he needs to go to the temple at that very moment. How they connected, we don’t know. How the Holy Spirit informed Simeon it was this baby boy and not another, we don’t know. But we do know what’s most important. God kept his promise of the ages and kept his promise to this man, He has remembered to save sinners by sending the Savior.
Though we don’t know much about Simeon, we are told more about the salvation that God has provided. That’s what’s most important, and Simeon played his part in the story of God’s salvation for sinners. What kind of salvation did God provide for sinners?
I. GOD POINTS TO A TIMELESS SALVATION (LK 2:29-31, 34)
This was not an accident; God planned our salvation before the beginning of time. Simeon said in v. 30 that God prepared this salvation. In v. 34, he tells Mary that Jesus was destined to be the Savior of God’s salvation. When you think about it many elements of the Christmas story point to God’s eternal plan of salvation.
Some of you may have a star that caps your Christmas tree, or maybe you sent out Christmas cards that emphasize the star that led the wise men to Jesus. The star testifies to the timelessness of salvation, and science supports this teaching of scripture. I don’t have a problem if God suddenly created a star and caused its light to travel faster than the speed of light. He is the Creator, and He can do what He wants. But in the normal workings of our solar system, scientists tell us it takes years for light from a star to reach us. The sun is 93 million miles away, and it takes eight minutes for its light to reach earth. But the stars that are farthest from us but still visible take over 4,000 years for the light to reach us!