Luke 2:21-52 Sunday, December 26, 2010 First Sunday After Christmas
Only one day has passed since we celebrated Christmas Day, but now we are going to move through time as we arrive at the temple eight days after the birth of Jesus. It is time for the child to be dedicated according to Jewish ritual. Mary and Joseph bring the child and their small sacrificial offering so they can comply with the custom of the day.
While they are there, they meet a man named Simeon. He is a good and righteous man who has been waiting for this moment for years. Through a spiritual insight, he recognizes the child as the long- awaited Savior. He takes Jesus from the arms of Mary and offers a wonderful blessing for the child. At the same time he offers a word of caution to Mary and Joseph.
Then they are blessed to meet a woman named Anna from the tribe of Asher. She too recognized the child and offered a word of thanksgiving for all who long for redemption.
Redemption, salvation, deliverance, rescue…those are all expressions of what God has done for the people of God. Let me ask you to reflect for a moment. How do these four words impact your life today? Have you known Christ and the fullness of his love? Are you ready to move forward into 2011 with a new spirit of hope, a fresh commitment of faith, and a willingness to grow as a disciple of Jesus Christ?
Your reflection and your response will make all the difference!
As always, it is a joy to serve with you and to share worship together in the name of Jesus!
This is the last installment of our Advent series on the Gospel of Luke. It has been a blessing to share this journey with you. I do pray that the experience of seeing the life and ministry of Jesus through the eyes of Luke has helped you know the love that Jesus has for you and your family. Personally, the Gospel of Luke continues to expand my vision of what God calls us to do and to be as Christian disciples.
And so now, Theophilus, (may I still call you Theophilus?) I pray the peace of God upon you as we step into a New Year together. I pray that 2011 will be filled with blessings, discoveries, growth, and the presence of our Holy God. Amen