Then & Now - Week of December 16


A Bucket List at Christmas 
Luke 2:21-38

This time of year most of us have a wish list, things we to see unwrapped on that magical night.

But who has a Bucket List? Who brings up the things they want to do before they die—on Christmas? Sounds kind of morbid, doesn't it?

Not if you're Simeon. His Christmas story unfolds as Luke tells the original Christmas story, the story of God coming to earth as a man, God becoming human in the flesh as a baby.

Simeon had no business being a part of the grandest story in the history of the world. He was just a common forgettable man. Not much is told about who he is or where he comes from.

All we know about Simeon is that he was a faithful man of God. Unlike most of his contemporaries, Simeon was just foolish enough to actually believe the promises of God to His people, delivered down through the centuries by the prophets.

They told of a coming Messiah. The Messiah wouldn't come in grand fashion. He wouldn't grow up in Herod's house. The ruling religious leaders would miss him. His own people would miss him.

Simeon knew and read those promises. He also knew that this Messiah, this baby born, would not come to overthrow the Romans and give Israel the ruler they desperately wanted. No, this Messiah would come to die, actually. He'd come to forgive sins, to defeat death, and to provide a way for anyone who believes to have peace with God.

Nothing was really special about Simeon except that he believed God. And guess what? God looks for people like Simeon. So the Holy Spirit came upon Simeon and promised to inform this faithful man when the Messiah was to come.

Day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year, Simeon waited for the baby. He never gave up hope. He believed Messiah would come.

And one day, in the arms of a poor peasant mother was the Messiah, God Incarnate, Immanuel, God with us. At last Simeon saw the Messiah.

Now, Simeon could die. He had seen Christ. He'd achieved his Bucket List.

What are you waiting for this Christmas? I'd submit to you that Christ is what you're waiting for. If you haven't met the Messiah, meet him this season.

Daniel Darling is an author and pastor with a passion for young people. He is the author of Teen People of the Bible, a 100-day devotional for teens. Visit him on Facebook by clicking here, or at danieldarling.com

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