Have you ever longed . . . and hoped . . . and waited to see something?
Do you also remember that sweet, sweeping sensation when you finally did?
I felt that way with the birth of both of my children. I longed to see them, those 40 longs weeks of waiting. I had no idea what they would look like . . . or exactly what to expect.
That helps me relate, ever-so-slightly, with how dear old Simeon must have felt when, at long last, he set his eyes upon Israel’s promised consolation.
Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for Him what the custom of the Law required, Simeon took Him in his arms and praised God, saying: ‘Sovereign Lord, as You have promised, You may now dismiss Your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen Your salvation, which You have prepared in the sight of all nations: a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of your people Israel’ (Lk 2:25, 27b-32).
I imagine Simeon’s prayer echoed Psalm 69:13:
But I pray to You, Lord,
in the time of Your favor;
in Your great love, O God,
answer me with your sure salvation.
The words of Psalm 91:16 seem like a fitting reply to his faith-filled prayers:
With long life I will satisfy him
and show him my salvation.
Simeon had received a promise of God. And he watched and he waited his whole life for that which he hoped and believed would come.
God, ever true to His word, blessed his servant Simeon. He saw the Lord’s Messiah and the coming of man’s salvation—a salvation that revealed the Father to both Gentile and Jew.
Jesus was promised first to His own, then to the Gentiles. We see just that order of revelation occur at His birth. First the shepherds, His fellow-countrymen, were heralded by the heavenly hosts. Then, the magi, by starry hosts.
Salvation has been prepared by God and secured by Jesus for all. He has paid sins’ debt with His blood. And we now can exclaim with the psalmists that the Lord is my salvation. We, too, can depart in peace, knowing our Peace with God has come.
Do you know the salvation of the Lord?
Are you longing to see Him come? Watching . . . waiting . . . hoping?
We may not see it, like Simeon. But faith is not always seeing. That was the case for many others who came before us. They lived faithfully, waiting to see the promises of God. But salvation, though not seen, will not to be denied.
On that you can rest assured.