Luke 2:25-26 - Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord's Christ.
Simeon loved the Lord, and he had one wish, which God knew about: he wanted to see God's Messiah come before he died. The Holy Spirit promised him he would.
How exciting that must have been! Simeon would see Jesus, God in the flesh, guaranteed. He must have wondered every day, "Is today the day I'll see Him?" And every night he knew he'd wake up in the morning, because God hadn't kept His promise yet; and God always keeps His promises. Jesus would come before his death.
And then came the glorious day when he went to the temple at the impulse of the Holy Spirit and saw a poor young couple with a newborn in their arms. That was the One! He took up Jesus in his arms and praised God. Simeon's life wish was fulfilled. Now he could die, go home to the Lord, in peace.
This is true for us, too, isn't it? We too have seen God's Christ—not with the eyes of the body, but with the eyes of faith. God's Holy Spirit has revealed Him to us. We have seen Him in the Bible. We have eaten and drunk His body and blood at Communion. For us too, it is "Jesus before death." We don't have to wait. We have Him now.
Jesus promised His disciples, "I am with you always, to the end of the age" (Matthew 28:20). We will not go through death alone. The One who has already been through death and back again, this One, Jesus, will be our guide. We will not stay in death, either; Jesus, our risen Savior, promises to raise us from the dead as well.
Christ before death; that's the right order. And that is the way God has given Jesus to us as well.
THE PRAYER: Father, thank You that You have given us Your Son now, in this life, so we don't need to be afraid of death. Amen.
Advent Devotions were written by Dr. Kari Vo.
The Coming King REFLECTION QUESTIONS!
What is on your "bucket list" of things to do before your death?
Are you afraid of dying? Why or why not?
How do you find strength and comfort when you think about death? Be as specific as you can.
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