The Bible

 

누가복음 2:21-35 : Simeon Blesses the Newborn Baby Jesus

공부하다

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21 할례할 팔일이 되매 그 이름을 예수라 하니 곧 수태하기 전에 천사의 일컬은 바러라

22 모세의 법대로 결례의 날이 차매 아기를 데리고 예루살렘에 올라가니

23 이는 주의 율법에 쓴 바 첫 태에 처음 난 남자마다 주의 거룩한 자라 하리라 한 대로 아기를 주께 드리고

24 또 주의 율법에 말씀하신 대로 비둘기 한 쌍이나 혹 어린 반구 둘로 제사하려 함이더라

25 예루살렘에 시므온이라 하는 사람이 있으니 이 사람이 의롭고 경건하여 이스라엘의 위로를 기다리는 자라 성령이 그 위에 계시더라

26 저가 주의 그리스도를 보기 전에 죽지 아니하리라 하는 성령의 지시를 받았더니

27 성령의 감동으로 성전에 들어가매 마침 부모가 율법의 전례대로 행하고자 하여 그 아기 예수를 데리고 오는지라

28 시므온이 아기를 안고 하나님을 찬송하여 가로되

29 `주재여 이제는 말씀하신 대로 종을 평안히 놓아 주시는도다

30 내 눈이 주의 구원을 보았사오니

31 이는 만민 앞에 예비하신 것이요

32 이방을 비추는 빛이요 주의 백성 이스라엘의 영광이니이다' 하니

33 그 부모가 그 아기에 대한 말들을 기이히 여기더라

34 시므온이 저희에게 축복하고 그 모친 마리아에게 일러 가로되 `보라 이 아이는 이스라엘 중 많은 사람의 패하고 흥함을 위하여 비방을 받는 표적되기 위하여 세움을 입었고

35 또 칼이 네 마음을 찌르듯 하리라 이는 여러 사람의 마음의 생각을 드러내려 함이니라' 하더라

Commentary

 

Simeon and Anna Bless the Newborn Baby Jesus

     

By Ray and Star Silverman and New Christian Bible Study Staff

Simeon blesses the infant Lord.

Jewish law required parents of firstborn sons to present them before the Lord at the temple in Jerusalem, after the required 33 day period of the mother's purification. Mary and Joseph duly took their new baby Jesus to Jerusalem, to the temple, for this ceremony.

Imagine how they must have been feeling as they made this 5 or 6 mile trek. They knew that they were involved in an amazing miracle, the birth of the long-awaited Messiah. They'd been visited by angels, with messages from God. Mary, a virgin, had borne a child. Mary's cousin, Elizabeth, had just had a miracle baby, too, in her old age. Her husband, Zacharias, had been visited by an angel, too, and had doubted the angel's message, and been struck dumb. On the night of Jesus's birth, shepherds had come to worship the new baby, having been told of his birth by a host of angels.

Mary and Joseph must have been feeling somewhat overwhelmed, but... they were obeying the law. Jesus had been circumcised after 8 days. Now, it was time to go to Jerusalem, so they went. Maybe, given all the miracles they'd experienced, they were expecting it to be an unusual visit. It was. The story is told very clearly in Luke 2:22-39.

At the temple, they met Simeon, and then Anna, both elderly, both good, and both drawn to the temple, ready and waiting for the Messiah. When Mary, Joseph, and Jesus arrive, they are moved by the insight that here, before their eyes, was the prophesied baby. Together they represent the essential spiritual affections—the affection for truth (Simeon) and the affection for goodness (Anna), which are necessary for “the performance of all things according to the law of the Lord” (Luke 2:39). Whenever these two qualities combine in us, we know we are in the presence of God, that the Holy Spirit is upon us, and that our eyes have seen His salvation.

The central theme of Luke's gospel is the development of the understanding. As we read the description of Simeon’s experience, we note how often the story focuses on his “sight” and on what he “sees.” We read that “it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ” (Luke 2:26). And when Simeon comes into the temple, he takes the Child up in his arms and says, “Lord, now You are letting Your servant depart in peace, according to your Word. For my eyes have seen Your salvation” (Luke 2:29-30).

Just as Zacharias had prophesied about “a light” that would shine in the darkness, (Luke 2:79), just as the shepherds beheld a great light — the “glory of the Lord” — shining upon them, the true Source of that light is now shining upon Simeon as he gazes upon the face of the Child. Deeply inspired, Simeon continues his prophecy: “My eyes have seen Your salvation, which You have prepared for all peoples, a light to bring revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of Your people Israel” (Luke 2:30-32).

Turning to Mary, Simeon says, “Behold, this Child is destined for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign which shall be spoken against (yes, a sword shall pierce through your own soul also), that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed” (Luke 2:35).

Simeon’s words are full of prophecy. There is a power that enables each of us to live according to the truth we know. And those who receive this power shall “rise,” while those who reject it shall “fall.” It is exactly as Simeon says: “Behold this Child is destined for the fall and rising of many in Israel.”

Because none of us is perfect, we will all undergo times of doubt and times of trial. There will be times when we feel the “piercing of the sword.” Even Mary would not be exempt. She would witness the horror of her own Son’s crucifixion, and feel a mother’s pain and anguish. Indeed, as Simeon had told her, “a sword shall pierce through your own soul also.”

It’s part of the journey. While our suffering might not be as great as Mary’s when she stood near the cross, nor as grievous as Jesus’ as He was crucified, there will be times when we too will experience sorrow, loss, and grief—times that may be so painful that it will feel as though a sword has pierced through our own soul. But these times are not to be avoided or feared. They can instead be opportunities to renew our faith, confirm our belief in God, and resolve to go forward. These are the times when our most cherished values will be challenged, and our deepest thoughts will be made manifest. These times and these trials are allowed to come into our lives so that our true nature may be exposed and “the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.”

But no matter how desperate our situation, or how grievous our trials, there is still a quiet place in our hearts that waits patiently for God. This faith is represented by Anna the prophetess, who, like Simeon, is led to the temple at that very moment. After a seven-year marriage, she remained as a widow for many years. Now, at the age of eighty-four, she has never departed from the temple. Instead, she has chosen to remain faithful, “serving God with fasting and prayers night and day” (Luke 2:37).

This is not a one-time experience. It is an experience which continues to grow within us, an experience which becomes stronger over time. As it is written, “And the Child grew and became strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace of God was upon Him” (Luke 2:39).

If we can be like Simeon -- loving to see truth, and Anna, loving to be good -- we will be ready, and listening, and willing to be moved by the spirit, and we will see the Lord born in our lives.