Text: Luke 2:22-38; Matthew 2:1-23
Event(s): First temple visit with acknowledgments by Simeon and Anna; Visit from the Wise Men; Flight into Egypt; Massacre of the Innocents; From Egypt to Nazareth
Luke 2:33 Mary and Joseph knew who Jesus was, but Simeon’s declaration pointed specifically to the fact that Jesus would also be “a light to the Gentiles.”
Luke 2:34-35 “destined for the fall and rising of many in Israel..” This phrase makes reference to the fact that some would reject Jesus, causing them to fall spiritually but yet others would accept Him, and therefore rise spiritually. The antagonism Jesus would face would hurt Mary. How gracious of a God, though, to reveal this to her ahead of time, giving her time to prepare her heart and guarding her against thinking something had “gone wrong” when she began to see it evidenced later in His life.
Matthew 2:11 A very natural response of worship is the desire to give. It is a healthy indicator that kingdom life is active within us; and should this not be our experience this, we would do good to ask ourselves why.
Matthew 2:12 Warnings from God do not bring fear, they dispel it and comfort us.
Today’s Takeaway: It is clear, through these passages of Scripture, that the Lord desires to speak to us in various ways. A heart that first of all believes that God wants to speak, and that is also turned towards Him, attentive, awaiting to hear what the Father would say, will have ears to perceive what He is saying. There’s no special formula. We must not overcomplicate it. The question for us then becomes, what can I do to become more attentive? Must I silence some distractions? Must I stir up my belief that He actually wants to speak to me? Am I desperate enough to hear His voice that I will turn my undivided attention towards Him? (And be quiet enough to listen). Today’s takeaway may look different for each of us, but may our belief and desire to hear God speak be stirred to a new level.
Additional (optional) reading: 2 Chronicles 16:9; Job 33:14; John 10:27; Hebrews 1:1-2