Saturday within the Octave of the Feast of the Nativity of our Lord
Scripture: St. Luke 2:25-32 (NKJV)
25 And behold, there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon, and this man was just and devout, waiting for the Consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. 26 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. 27 So he came by the Spirit into the temple. And when the parents brought in the Child Jesus, to do for Him according to the custom of the law, 28 he took Him up in his arms and blessed God and said:
29 “Lord, now You are letting Your servant depart in peace, according to Your word; 30 For my eyes have seen Your salvation 31 which You have prepared before the face of all peoples, 32 a light to bring revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of Your people Israel.”
It is no accident or coincidence that the song of Simeon and the declaration of the heavenly host in verse 14 are regular parts of our historical worship service. These are beautiful Words that God has given us which encapsulate tremendous events and ideas. God had become a real man, and He was fulfilling the divine promises that He would save us from sin, death, and the Enemy.
Every time we celebrate the Divine Service according to our received faithful custom of worship we remember Christmas, and His death on Good Friday, and Easter, and Judgment Day. True worship is focused on the things that God does, and these are the moments in our history where He works great blessings for us! That is why worship is properly focused on His Word and His Sacraments, and not on our efforts, feelings, or desires to be entertained. His work is far greater than those things.
One of the blessings that God works through His Word and Sacraments is that He teaches us to focus our thoughts, hopes, and lives on His work. He teaches us to wait on the Lord and to seek His kingdom and righteousness. He teaches us to be like Simeon, looking toward the Christ and rejoicing when He comes to be with us and grant us His peace and goodwill in forgiveness and salvation. Thanks be to God for that.
We pray: Grant, we beseech Thee, Almighty God, that the new birth of Thine only-begotten Son in the flesh may set us free, who are held in the old bondage under the yoke of sin; through the same Jesus Christ, Thy Son, our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.