Bulletin Thought - December 2016
December 4, 2016
A Thought from Pastor Bryson,
Christmas the season in which we celebrate the birth of the Christ Child. It is a season that should fill us with hope, joy, and peace. Such was the case for two interesting individuals mentioned in the Scriptures.
When the mother of Jesus finished her days of purification after giving birth to a male child (a little over a month had passed - Lev. 12:2-4) she presented Him in the temple. Luke 2:25-38 mention two individuals whose lives were dramatically affected by seeing the baby Jesus.
Simeon was a man described as being just and devout, a man waiting for the Consolation of Israel who was led by the Holy Spirit to the temple. When he saw Jesus, he was overcome with joy and after taking the baby into his arms he exclaimed to the Lord, “Lord, you are now letting your servant depart in peace for my eyes have seen your salvation… “(vv. 27-30).
Then there was also Anna who is called a prophetess who was of great age. She served God with fastings and prayers never departing from the temple. When she saw the baby Jesus she gave thanks to the Lord and spoke of Him to all those who looked for redemption in Israel (vv. 36-38). These two individuals more than likely did not live to see the ministry of Jesus come to fruition, but yet their lives were dramatically affected by their brief encounter with Him in the temple. They were filled with joy, hope, and peace.
Many of us today who profess faith in Jesus as Savior have the benefit of having walked in relationship with Him for years but yet some struggle with maintaining hope, peace, and joy. Unlike Simeon and Anna who only saw Him briefly, we have the advantage of having the Scriptures available to us and the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit with us always. Simeon and Anna like us, lived in a day and time of political upheaval and social injustice, but when they saw Jesus, what joy, hope and peace filled their souls.
The Scriptures remind us that Jesus is Immanuel, God with us (Matt. 1:21-23). He came that we might have life and have it more abundantly (John 10:10). He is coming back and until He returns we are being kept by His divine power (I Peter 1:3-5).
Remember at Christmas, we celebrate the birth of the Christ Child, He is our joy; He is our peace; and He does fill us with hope.