Anna and Simeon



Daily Inspirational Thoughts

to bless your life.

~


This is one of the weekly devotionals

by Beth McLendon

~


The topic this week 

Christmas Hidden Messages


- - -

Bible characters inspire us


Note that this page will highlight

Anna and Simeon


Monday  November 28, 2016


God has hidden messages and

hidden blessings in His Word.


Monday Thoughts:

The video below is a short talk

about the significance

of the names of the genealogy mentioned in Genesis.


To continue:

After I watched the above video,

I was keenly aware that

the choice of a name in the Bible

may have biblical significance.


Soon after watching that video,

I was looking through some old personal papers

and found

that I had a relative named

Anna.

I've always liked that name.

And that name

reminds me of the wonderful Bible story

in Luke chapter two

about Anna at the temple

seeing Jesus soon after Jesus was born.


That entire Bible story

is written

at the bottom of the page.

You may want to read it at this point.


So I began to wonder what the name

"Anna"

means.

I looked up the name

Anna

and found that it means

"Grace."


I thought,

"Wow, the word "GRACE"

really fits into the story about Jesus being born.


It is like God

 - gave a hidden clue right there in that Bible story

that Jesus brought grace into the world."


Next,

I began to wonder

if any

other

names in that story

have a hidden meaning for us.

~

What about the name

"Simeon?"


Simeon was at the temple that day.

In the Greek Strong's Concordance,

it says that name means

"Harkening."


"Simeon"

means

"to Harken" or "to hear."


So God is saying,

"Listen up, people."



As an adult, Jesus would emphasize a teaching

by saying:

"He that hath ears to hear, let him hear."


So I think the name "Simeon"

was given to call attention

to the birth of Jesus.


So now that I had seen something special

in the names of Anna and Simeon.

I was really getting excited.

So I looked to see

if there were any other names mentioned in the story.

 

Verse 39 says,

"And there was one Anna, a prophetess,

the daughter of Phanuel,

of the tribe of Aser [or Asher]."


I looked up what the name "Phanuel" means.

  Phanuel

means "the face of God."


Now that fits the story!

After Jesus was born, we see "the face of God."


Mark Lowry


Mark Lowry wrote a song

about the majesty and wonder of Jesus coming to earth.

The song is called "Mary, Did you Know?"

In it, the lyrics have these words directed to Mary,


"Did you know that your baby boy
has walked where angels trod?
And when you kiss your little baby,
you kissed The Face of God!"


Below

Mark Lowry sings

"Mary Did You Know?"




Truly, the birth of Jesus is about seeing

"the Face of God."

Wow, God has hidden some great things in this story.


Well, then I wondered about the name

Asher,

because Anna was born of the house of Asher.


I found out that:


Asher

means

"Blessed!"


That fits the story!

Jesus came to BLESS the world.


I now realized that God really did

choose those names to fit the story.

Those names really are a hidden part

of the beautiful story of Jesus.


Jesus

means

Salvation!


Tuesday  November 29, 2016


The Life of Anna is an inspiration to us today.


Today I am bringing more insights

into the story of the

first time

baby Jesus

went to the temple.


Tuesday Thoughts:

As I was reading and thinking about

the role of Anna in this story,

I noticed that she LIVED in the temple.


She was always there.


The Bible says, "She departed not."


Anna did her best to be dedicated to the Lord,

and the Lord blessed her

with being able to

see

her Messiah before she died.


Note verse 38:

36 And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity;

37 And she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day.

38 And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem.


After Anna saw baby Jesus - the Messiah - 

she believed in Him,

and she continued to speak of Him

to ALL who were open to hearing. 


She spoke to ALL who were LOOKING for the

redemption of the Lord.


Jesus IS the redemption of the Lord.


Jesus grew up and walked among the people of Israel,

yet

most did not recognize him.

For one thing most were not

LOOKING

for the Messiah.

Of those who were looking,

many had a vision of what he would be like

and what he would do.

Jesus did not fulfill their vision,

so they did not recognize him.


Dear Lord,

I realize that many who lived in Anna's day were not looking for the Messiah. I pray today that you would stir the hearts of all my lost loved ones that they would start to look for their Messiah.

Father, many people who lived in Anna's time had a vision of the Messiah that was incorrect. Many today have a vision of Jesus that is incorrect. Many people do not read their Bible, so they are easily fooled into believing things about Jesus that are not true.

Lord, I declare that I will read my Bible. I want to know the true Jesus. I want to serve him and love him with all my heart.

Lord, help me not to twist the scriptures into my interpretation. Help me not to create my vision of things.  Help me to see things the way they really are. Help me to love your Word just as it is.

I pray these things in the mighty name of Jesus,

Amen

Copyright © 2014 Beth McLendon of Inspirational – Prayers.com



Wednesday November 30, 2016


Simeon was a faithful man

who was sensitive to God's voice.


Wednesday Thoughts:


On Monday, I gave some insights into the Biblical name of "Simeon" and related it to the story of the first visit of Jesus to the temple.

Today I am going to talk more about Simeon.


Luke 2:25-26 tells us:

25 And, behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him.

26 And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord's Christ.


So Simeon (whose name means "to hear")

actually

"heard"

God tell him that

he

 - would actually look upon the promised Messiah -

at some point in his life.

God speaks to each of us each day.

-

Many times we are not listening. 

-

Simeon was sensitive to the voice of God.

He not only heard the words of God

but

he believed those words. 


Verse 25 tells us that Simeon was a just and devout man. 

This faithful follower of God was given a great gift. He got to see the Messiah, to recognize the Messiah, and to speak words of prophecy over the Messiah.


God gives amazing gifts

to those who are faithful to him.


Simeon not only "heard" God tell him that he would see the Messiah, but verse 27 tells us that he also "heard" God tell him to go to the temple that day.


It was important for Simeon

to "hear" God and to "obey" God.



Simeon heard God,

he obeyed God,

and

he experienced the blessing of God.


Dear Lord,

Simeon was a man who wanted to hear you when you spoke to him.

Lord, I want to hear you when you speak to me. Make me more sensitive to your inner voice in my heart.

I do not want to miss any opportunities to go where you want me to go and do what you want me to do.

In Jesus name I pray,

Amen

Copyright © 2014 Beth McLendon of Inspirational – Prayers.com



No good thing will he withhold

from those

who walk along his paths.

Psalm 84:11 TLB



Thursday December 1, 2016


Simeon was directed by God

to say amazing things!


Thursday Thoughts:

Father God stirred Simeon to go to the temple to see Jesus. That day Simeon saw the Messiah. I'm sure it was the most exciting day of his life.

Simeon took the Messiah into his arms. 

We read:

28 Then took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said,

29 Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word:

30 For mine eyes have seen thy salvation,

31 Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people;

32 A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.

33 And Joseph and his mother marvelled at those things which were spoken of him.

(The whole story is at the bottom of the page.)


Verse 30 says, "For mine eyes have seen thy salvation."

Simeon had seen his salvation in the body of a little child. And he had seen the salvation of the world.


Salvation to the Gentiles!


Verse 32 is one of the most beautiful verses:


32 A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.

I am a Gentile. It touches my heart that God directed Simeon to single out us Gentiles and remind us that Jesus came for us, too!

God told Simeon to speak out the will of God. That "will" was that Jesus would be a light to the Gentiles and the glory of the people of Israel.

I hope all of the Gentile Christians reading this will pray Romans 10:1 with me. Paul taught us to pray for Israel. He said, "Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved."


The Resurrection is Revealed

I now draw your attention to verse 34:


34 And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against;

Simeon said, "This child is set for the fall and rising again" -

That word "again" in the Greek means "A rising from the dead."

Simeon was prophesying that Jesus would die and resurrect from the dead. He was speaking of the most important part of the Gospel. As Paul later said in 1 Corinthians 15:14, "And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain."

In verse 34, the Greek word "sign" means a sign, or a miracle, or a wonder.

Truly Jesus himself was all of those.  And his resurrection from the dead was a sign, a miracle, and a wonder.

In verse 35, Simeon tells Mary that a sword will pierce her heart. He is saying that she will see his death. And yes, Mary was right there when Jesus died.

On my blog page, at the very bottom of the page - the very first blog I did in January 2014, I got permission from Mark Lowry to quote from a video of one of his presentations taken from Youtube. You can go to my blog and listen for yourself, or you can read his words below.

Mark Lowry

said something very profound.


Mark was talking

about the crucifixion of Jesus. He said,

"Jesus said, 'I and the Father are one.'
And
they crucified him.
And
his mother never opened her mouth.

Do you realize that if I was being crucified in my hometown

for claiming to be God,

my mother would be pitching a fit?

She'd say, 'He's crazy, but don't kill him.

He's a liar, but don't kill him.

He's a lunatic, but don't kill him.'

But the silence of Mary at the cross

is such a great testimony

to the fact of who Jesus is!"

- - -

In answer to Mark's comments, I say:

Wow! How true that is!

Yes, if anybody

knew

that Jesus had a virgin birth, it was Mary.


There are many factual reasons to believe that

Jesus IS the Messiah.

In my opinion, Mark has given

one of the best pieces of evidence we have that

Jesus is really God in human flesh:

The silence of Mary.


Friday December 2, 2016


How we Process the Resurrection

reveals our Heart toward God.

 

Friday Thoughts - More insights on verse 35

Simeon said to Mary,

35 (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.

Many people know the story of Jesus dying on the cross, and then three days later resurrecting from the dead.

Knowing that information is not enough to receive eternal salvation.

What each person does with that information is the important thing.

It is vital for each of us to process that information correctly.

If we correctly process the life and resurrection of Christ, then we will wholeheartedly follow him all the days of our life, and we will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

In verse 35, we see that the resurrection will reveal the thoughts of the hearts of many.

Yes, how each person, who lived at the time of the resurrection, handled the resurrection of Jesus showed his or her heart toward God.

And today, how each person handles the resurrection shows the condition of his or her heart toward God.

If we truly understand the resurrection, then we would be following Jesus with zeal. And we would desire to make sure our loved ones understand the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus.

To help your family understand the Trinity see our page: Understanding the Trinity

For lots of ideas for sharing biblical things with your children or teens see our pages: Family Devotions and  Feed my Sheep

Also see our Bible Devotions page for Bible arts and crafts.

Final Insights


Before I conclude this Bible study on Luke chapter two, I want to go back and emphasize a verse at the beginning of the story.

I take you back to verse 28 in the story of Simeon in the temple.

Simeon takes baby Jesus in his arms and blesses him.

This Greek word translated "bless" is translated in the King James Bible 1/2 the time as "bless" and 1/2 the time as "praise."

The Greek word can mean: to praise, to celebrate with praises, to consecrate, to cause to prosper, to bless with the favor of God.

So I believe this is telling us that Simeon was doing a lot of joyful praising and also giving some God-directed words of blessing to the little One who was and is our Savior.

What a joyful scene must have been experienced that day.

Can you begin to imagine the joy of Simeon and Anna?

Consider that one day WE will behold Him also. When we do, we will behold him in all his glory!

Jesus gave a special blessing to those of us who believe in Him even though we have never seen him. He spoke these words after his resurrection. The setting was the appearance of Jesus to the disciples and for the first time Thomas was there. Thomas had been doubting the resurrection of Jesus.

____

We read in John chapter 20 the New King James Version:

Now Thomas, called the Twin, one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said, to him, "We have seen the Lord."

So he said to them, "Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe."

And after eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, "Peace to you!" Then He said to Thomas, "Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing." 

And Tomas answered and said to Him, "My Lord and my God!"

____


Jesus saith unto him,

"Thomas because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed:

blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed."

John 21:29 KJV


Dear Lord,

Thank you that you drew me to yourself. Thank you for the gift of salvation.

I proclaim that I believe in Jesus as my Savior even though I have not seen him with my human eyes.

Thank you for the blessings that you give in John 21:29 to those who have not seen but still believe.

Thank you for every blessing you give me.

Amen

Copyright © 2012 Beth McLendon of Inspirational – Prayers.com



The Featured Bible Story


Found in the book of Luke

Chapter 2

21 And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called Jesus, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

22 And when the days of her purification according to the law of Moses were accomplished, they brought him to Jerusalem, to present him to the Lord;

23 (As it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy to the Lord;)

24 And to offer a sacrifice according to that which is said in the law of the Lord, A pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.

25 And, behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him.

26 And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord's Christ.

27 And he came by the Spirit into the temple: and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him after the custom of the law,

28 Then took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said,

29 Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word:

30 For mine eyes have seen thy salvation,

31 Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people;

32 A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.

33 And Joseph and his mother marvelled at those things which were spoken of him.

34 And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against;

35 (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.

36 And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity;

37 And she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day.

38 And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem.

39 And when they had performed all things according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their own city Nazareth.



If you liked this page, you will probably like the devotional


Clever Clues


Jump to the top of Anna and Simeon

This page was originally presented Sept 29, 2014.