Advent 2015: Day 21 “The Giving God…Revelation”
“Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace, according to your word; 30 for my eyes have seen your salvation 31 that you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, 32 a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to your people Israel.” — Luke 2:29–32
I LOVE this section of scripture! I know it’s technically after Christmas….BUT, it IS connected and it IS about what Jesus’ Advent accomplishes! This text is what an old guy by the name of Simeon said about Jesus as Joseph and Mary were bringing Jesus to the temple just after He was born.
If you don’t know the back-story, you’ll find it just before our text in Luke 2:25–27.
“Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous 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 And he came in 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”
So…Simeon had it “revealed to him by the Holy Spirit” that this would happen! Simeon was a man of revelation who prophesied revelation! And in Simeon’s story, you understand something about what God brings us through Jesus….Revelation!
Basically, revelation is when something unknown or hidden is shown…is made known….or you now “see” and “understand”.
Revelation is one of the most important gift God gives us through Christ!
Have you ever wanted to know something about something….or someone? How about God? Ever want to know something about Him? If you’re reading this….and have gotten this far….then the answer is probably… “yes”. So what’s the necessary ingredient to getting it right? To understanding? To knowing? AND…what is the barrier…the block?
Well…according to the scriptures….the problem is NOT with God trying to hide! The problem is with US trying to hide from God! Remember what happened in the garden when Adam and Eve sinned? What did they do when they “heard the sound of God” in the garden? (Genesis 3)
They were ashamed!
Notice…that GOD came to them! HE came seeking Them! Hang on to this…we’ll return to it in a second….
This is what sin does to us…it causes US to try and hide from God. It causes US to try and have “gods” (whatever they may be) other than the One True God! I mean check out how St. Paul describes this whole thing!
“8 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. 19 For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. 21 For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.” — Romans 1:8–23
Why is God upset? Because….in the face of His Revelation….we choose lesser “gods”! We exchange what God offers us….for much, much less. All to justify our lust and greed….and fallen desires.
HE WANT’S MORE FOR US AND FROM US!
So sin…in short…messes up our spiritual senses! We have “eyes” but can’t see! Ears but can’t hear! What God desires!
Which is why Simeon is so important to us! AND is what Jesus came to bring to ALL of us!
What did Simeon receive from the Holy Spirit?
And what does the Spirit “reveal” to Simeon about Jesus?
HE will be a “light for revelation” to all mankind!
What does this mean? Well, IF you desire to understand…know…have “revelation” about God, you will find that IN Christ! (In fact He directly says this in John 14:8–10!) And to discover who Christ is….there’s only ONE WAY to know Him! Through His Word! I tell people all the time….spend time with Jesus in the Gospels! You’ll find that what God did for Adam and Eve in the garden…He did for us through Jesus!
He came looking for us in our sin and shame!
He calls to us…. “Where are you?” (Genesis 3:9)
God didn’t do this because HE wanted to know where Adam and Eve were or even what happened! He called to them because Adam and Eve NEEDED to know that even though they had sinned….God forgave them…through the promise of His Son!
So, if this is the kind of God and Heavenly Father, we have….And if this is His Son who He has given to us….Why not follow Him? Get to know Him?
Over and over again…just keep the Gospels on “repeat” always! Matthew, Mark, Luke John…repeat!
You’ll begin to get “revelation”!
Look, there’s a LOT of opinions, ideas and thoughts about Jesus “out there”! But that’s NOT Holy Spirit…Revelation! NO! The kind of Revelation YOU and I need….doesn’t come from any man! It comes THROUGH God’s Holy Word and by His Holy Spirit! AND what’s more…this is what Jesus came to bring right?!
So why not spend time…every day….listening to Christ? Following Him from place to place…watching and observing how He interacts with people..and why! Why not get to know His love and power and goodness and strength! Why not find His gentleness and sacrifice….if you do…
it will be “Revealing”!
Tomorrow: Day 22 — “The Giving God…Light”
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