Today is the feast of the Presentation of the Lord in the temple. On this feast day, we remember the fulfillment of the Lord’s promise to His people in the Old Testament. He promised to send a savior to redeem them. The prophet Simeon, much advanced in years, served as an example for these people as well as for all of us living today. He was able to gaze on His Savior and with great faith, he proclaimed, “Now, Master, you may let your servant go in peace, according to your word, for my eyes have seen your salvation, which you prepared in the sight of all peoples: a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and glory for your people Israel.” Luke 2:28-32
While growing up, I read these stories in the Old Testament, telling of the long periods of waiting the Lord’s people were asked to endure. In Sunday school, I learned that we are the fortunate ones. We know that Jesus Christ has come and saved us from our sins. I thought I could never imagine what it was like to wait upon the Lord the way the Israelites had to. The tales of the Old Testament seemed as though they took place in a different world.
The reality is that we Christians today are also waiting. The Lord promised a second coming, and we currently have no idea when it will happen. In this present day, when the circumstances of our world appear more dire with each passing hour, we are called to read these passages from the Bible differently–not as stories of promises already fulfilled, but as messages of hope for the promise we believe will be fulfilled.
We can all be Simeons of our time. The Lord has given us hope of being able to have eyes that will behold our salvation, which He has promised us. Simeon recognized his Savior as a baby, but we will see Him coming in all His glory when He comes again.