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The Messiah
Bible Passage LUKE 2:21-40
This content is part of a series Bright Morning Reflections, in topic 2018 & book Luke.

The Messiah

  • Rev. Bright Mawuena Nfodzo
Date preached December 28, 2018


21  After eight days had passed, the infant was circumcised and named Jesus, the name given him by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

22  When the time came for their purification according to the Law of Moses, Joseph and Mary took Jesus up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord,

23  as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every firstborn son is to be designated as holy to the Lord.”

24  They also offered a sacrifice according to what is specified in the Law of the Lord: “a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons.”

25  Now a man named Simeon was in Jerusalem. This man was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the one who would comfort Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him.

26  It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die until he had seen the Lord’s Messiah.

27  Led by the Spirit, he went into the Temple. When the parents brought the child Jesus to do for him what was customary under the Law,

28  Simeon took the infant in his arms and praised God, saying,

29  “Master, now you are dismissing your servant in peace according to your promise,

30  because my eyes have seen your salvation,

31  which you prepared for all people to see—

32  a light that will reveal salvation to unbelievers and bring glory to your people Israel.”

33  Jesus’ father and mother kept wondering at the things being said about him.

34  Then Simeon blessed them and told Mary, his mother, “This infant is destined to cause many in Israel to fall and rise. Also, he will be a sign that will be opposed.

35  Indeed, a sword will pierce your own soul, too, so that the inner thoughts of many people might be revealed.”

36  Now Anna, a prophetess, was also there. She was a descendant of Phanuel from the tribe of Asher. She was very old, having lived with her husband for seven years after her marriage,

37  and then as a widow for 84 years. She never left the Temple, but continued to worship there night and day with times of fasting and prayer.

38  Just then she came forward and began to thank God and to speak about Jesus to everyone who was waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem.

39  After doing everything required by the Law of the Lord, Joseph and Mary returned to their hometown of Nazareth in Galilee.

40  Meanwhile, the child continued to grow and to become strong. He was filled with wisdom, and God’s favor rested upon him.


After Jesus was born, his parents were required to carry out three ceremonies according to the law of Moses; circumcision, the presentation of every firstborn to God at the temple, and the ritual purification of the mother after childbirth.

For the second ceremony, Mary and Joseph made the ten-kilometer journey to Jerusalem, where they went to the temple to present their firstborn to God. Ever since God saved Israel’s firstborn at the time of the original Passover, the firstborn of all Israel’s people and cattle belonged to Him. At the age of one month, the firstborn was taken to the temple, presented to God, then bought back by a payment of five shekels ( Exod 13:2; Num 18:15-16 ).

The third ceremony was the ritual purification of the mother after childbirth. In the case of a male child, this took place forty days after the birth when the mother presented a lamb for a burnt offering and a bird for a sin offering. If she was too poor to afford a lamb she could offer another bird instead (see Lev 12:1-8).

Jesus’ parents carried out these two ceremonies on the same visit to Jerusalem. Their poverty is indicated by their choice of the sacrifice available for those too poor to afford the normal sacrifice (Luke 2:22-24).

In separate incidents, two people at the temple, Simeon and Anna recognized Jesus as the promised Messiah. Unlike most Jews, Simeon had the spiritual insight to understand the sort of person the Messiah would be. He acknowledged that Jesus was the promised Messiah and that He would bring glory to Israel and salvation to the Gentiles (Luke 2:25-32).

Having praised God for the coming of Jesus, Simeon turned to address Mary. He saw that one day Jesus would create a division among the Jewish people. Many would reject Him and so fall under God’s punishment, but others would receive Him and so rise to salvation. People’s opposition to Jesus would show up the sinfulness of their hearts, and at the same time bring pain and sorrow to the heart of his mother, since He would be persecuted (Luke 2:33-35).

The other faithful Jew who saw Jesus and His parents in the temple was an elderly woman named Anna. In some ways, her life had been lonely, but she had never grown bitter. She sacrificed time and personal comforts so that she could devote herself to worship and prayer. Throughout her long life, she never stopped believing that salvation would come through the promised Messiah. On seeing Jesus she knew that this was the one for whom she had waited (Luke 2:36-38).

As the years of Jesus’ childhood passed, he developed in body, mind, and spirit.

🔷 Jesus brings salvation to all who believe in Him

🔷 Physical poverty is never a hindrance to receiving God’s blessings.

🔷 God will protect each of His own

💥 Thank God for the life of Jesus
💥 Ask for God’s protection
💥 Pray into 2019

Whoever has been blessed is blessed. Jesus is the world’s Redeemer to save His people. He is here because of you.


In series Bright Morning Reflections