"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.
And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord's Christ.
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.
Then took he Him up in his arms, and blessed God and said, Lord, now lettest Thou Thy servant depart in peace, according to Thy word.
For mine eyes have seen Thy salvation, Which Thou hast prepared before the face of all people; A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of Thy people, Israel.
And Joseph and His mother marveled at those things which were spoken of Him.
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: (Yea, a sword shall pierce through Thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed."
THE PROPHECY ABOUT JESUS
Simeon knew that Jesus would be the ‘salvation’. He used the word ‘soterion’ (Greek Strong's #4992) meaning ‘one that brings salvation, one that gives defense, a defender’ . Jesus came to defend us from the curse, from sin, from the one who wants to doom our souls in eternal fire, i.e. the devil. Jesus is a Defender.
Simeon called Jesus to be the "light", and Jesus is the "Light of the world..." Jesus is also called the "glory" of His people. When Jesus came, He came as the LIGHT OF THE WORLD. Before His coming, many believers in God were awaiting a Messiah, but they were in a twilight of understanding of it. Jesus had to come the first time, to bring LIGHT, so that they could see that it was not their nationality or ancestors that made them God’s, but it was a righteous heart. Jesus came, as had John the Baptist, beginning with the message ‘repent’. The LIGHT had begun to dispel the twilight.
While Jesus was here, He was the LIGHT. Now we are to ‘do the works’ that He did. We are all to be lights to the world. The world is approaching the time of the second coming of Jesus, and as John the Baptist was a forerunner to the Lord’s first coming, we are to be Lights in these last days.
The LIGHT is dispelling darkness more and more, and is affecting the ‘twilight’ that has crept into the church. The church first must choose to step further into the LIGHT, and escape the twilight. We are to bear that message of LIGHT to the church, and to the world outside of its walls.
To the church of Laodicea, which is representative of many of the churches of the last days, we see Jesus said they were not ’hot nor cold’ but were ‘lukewarm’ and that condition would soon cause Him to ‘spue them’. The twilight is the same condition, and those who remain in the twilight, will soon be extinguished, and put into darkness or judgment.
The coming of more LIGHT will make the church to not be tolerated as much as it has been.
"Ye shall be hated of all nations, for My name’s sake."
The revival of the last days, will bring more and more LIGHT into the darkness of the world, and into the twilight of the church. We are to be, like Jesus was in His first coming, in the forefront of LIGHT BEARING. And thereby, we are in the forefront of those hated by others. Moslems hate Christians. Media and government laws are often designed to discriminate against Christians. In many countries, Christians are hated and abused. We find in families, the saved one, the new Christian is shunned, mocked, hated, and sometimes divorced. This will become more and more pronounced in the last days, for the LIGHT of the Christians will become brighter, and the darkness of the sinners will become darker. The twilight will soon disappear, for the church will be judged. And we will be left with LIGHT versus DARKNESS.
The world will soon note a marvel and wonder. There will be LIGHT amidst DARKNESS, with no twilight. Of course, I am speaking in a spiritual sense. This lack of twilight will make the world more adamant and hateful toward the LIGHT. The twilight of many in churches has made the world more tolerant of Christianity. The lack of a broad difference between them and the saints, have made them accept what few differences they saw from their own lives and the lives of the saints. Too often, there has been little noticeable difference between those in the church and those good, moral people of the world. There will become more and more noticeable difference.
God began His work of re-creating this world, with the words ‘LET THERE BE LIGHT.’ First the Spirit brooded upon the waters, and the Spirit has been ‘brooding’ and warming up the cold and dark church in the first days of LIGHT coming to it.
John spoke that ‘God is Light’. (I John 1:5).
Paul spoke that God is ‘dwelling in light unapproachable.’
(I Timothy 6:16)
Paul had met Jesus on the road to Damascus, and there saw a ‘great light’. (Acts 22:6, Acts 9:3)
"The opening of Thy words giveth light.’
"The law is light.’
"Jehovah is my light and salvation.’
"The life was the light of men."
Isaiah records in Isaiah 42:6 and 49:6 that the Messiah was to come ‘for a light to the Gentiles.’
‘Christ shall give thee light’.
John the Baptist was spoken of by Jesus, and called a ‘burning and shining light.’ (John 5:25)
The disciples of the church age are called ‘the light of the world’. (Matthew 5:14)
Christians are called the ‘children of light’ (Luke 16:8, John 12:16, and Ephesians 5:18)
Therefore, we see that LIGHT is in Jesus, in His Word, in His followers. We are to receive a great revelation of light, and having been given that, will be greater LIGHT before a darker world.
When Moses came down off the mountain, after having stood before God, his face ‘shown’ with the glory of God. Having been in God’s presence, Moses’ face was also aglow with the LIGHT.
When Stephen was being stoned, and he looked up to see Jesus at the Father’s right hand, his face shown, and was enlightened by the LIGHT from God.
We need that encounter with the Lord, and need to receive many encounters with Him, so that the Spirit of Truth will give a new LIGHT to this us.
The revelation of that great light, made Paul to become one who would be a great light to others.
Acts 13:47 (speaking of Paul and Barnabas)
"For so hath the Lord commanded us, saying, I have set thee to be a light of the Gentiles, that thou shouldest be for salvation unto the ends of the earth.’
Paul said that ‘now we see through a glass darkly...’ Yet, the day has now come, when the LIGHT will shine brighter and brighter, dispelling the twilight. The LIGHT came and suffered and died for us, and soon He will come back for us. We are walking more and more close to that time, and the LIGHT is getting brighter and brighter.
II Peter 3:19
"We have also a more sure word of prophecy, whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arises in your heart."
As we walk and serve the Lord, we need to abide in LIGHT. This life will take on new dimensions, new horizons, new revelations, as we abide in the LIGHT.
I John 2:10
"He that loveth his brother, abideth in light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him.’
A new zeal will accompany this LIGHT bestowment from God. Sometimes, the revelation of new LIGHT, will bring some side effects, and one of them is misguided zeal.
There are many prophets in our day, eagerly awaiting the second coming of this same Jesus, longing for His glory, and His light to reappear. We, in these last days, want to see the rapture before our death. Simeon saw that Jesus was that LIGHT to come into the world. He also saw what that ‘LIGHT’ would mean to Mary, the mother of Jesus.
THE PROPHECY TO MARY
Simeon had much revelation from the Spirit, for he knew of the "fall", the "rising again" of this Jesus. He knew that Jesus would be rejected of many, and the painful suffering of Jesus would greatly affect His mother also. And Simeon also knew of the revelation of the sins of mankind, that the coming of this Jesus would bring to the world.
Mary was to be the mother of this Messiah. She was to watch Him grow, mature, but be hated by some family, by neighbors, by the many He came to save. She could not ‘announce’ Him, she had to let Him do it Himself. The pain of watching His suffering, His rejection, His inner hurts from such pain, would be hard for Mary to endure.
Elijah faced hundreds of false prophets upon Mt. Carmel. This was a dangerous place, and Elijah’s life depended on God doing something he had never seen done before. All the other prophets were hiding in caves. Elijah stayed there bravely. Soon Elijah would be under a juniper tree, fearing for his life, due to the death sentence on him from Jezebel. It still took a bit more help from God Who sent an angel to recommend rest and food to the weary prophet. Yet, the events that seemed so horrible, like the events on Mt. Carmel, built Elijah’s faith, and he survived all the later trials.
God allowed Joseph to be thrown into a pit, sold into slavery, be lied about by his master’s wife, sit in a prison with criminals, so that later, he could rise power, and be ready to save his own people from starvation in a time of long famine. Sometimes the hard things in life, are preparation for the great miracles of God to come.
Job was called the ‘greatest’ by God. God bragged on him to the devil. Then the devil was allowed to strip from Job, his wealth, family, friends, possessions, and health. Job stood firm, refused to ‘curse God and die’. He stood strong in faith, and God delivered him.
Why do we face trials, persecutions, mockings, and battles? We face them so we can be overcomers. We are told that ‘all things work together for good to them that are called of God and working according to His will...’ That describes what we are to be.
Mary had to face a ‘sword’ of pain within her, watching her Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to suffer, to bear pain, to be rejected, to be hated and finally crucified. She knew Who He is, and yet, watching the suffering her Son endured, would be almost unbearable pain to her.
The messages to the seven churches in Revelation 2 & 3 says ‘to him that overcometh will...’ God has ‘will’ for each overcomer. The overcomer will receive great blessings for their stedfast faith, for their willingness to not hide. If there were no mountains, not barriers, no burdens, no trials, no persecution, not battles, there would be nothing to overcome. God gave us armor, not tuxedos and wedding dresses. God gave us a sword, not a lazy boy chair. God gave us a shield, to a ping pong paddle. God said we would be hated, not loved. God said ‘many are the afflictions’ not many are the carnal rewards.
Paul and Silas sang in the dungeon. Job said ‘though He slay me, yet will I trust Him...’ Peter said to Jesus ‘bid me come’ when the Lord was walking on the water. Elijah heard the still small voice, Joseph was made second to pharoah in Egypt. Why? They were not hiders, they were overcomers.
Mary was to be an overcomer. She was to suffer a deep, inner sword of pain in her work of raising Jesus. He was to watch Him unfold His work, revealing a plan that was not one she would have chosen for her ‘Firstborn’.
Why do some saints have bland, pew sitting existences? They have no victories to report, no overwhelming joy to express because they are not overcomers. To avoid battle, Jonah took a ship of flight and hiding in it from the storm. Saul hid in baggage. Prophets hid in caves. !3,000 of Gideon’s army would rather be hiding from battle, and 9700 more would like to delay battle for a while so they can refresh themselves. They were rejected for Gideon’s army, and God rejects the same for His army of prophets.
Mary needed to, and she did, endure the agony of watching a ministry for her Son unfold before her. She would not have chosen for Jesus to endure such pain, and Mary’s sorrow was to unfold as His work in His first coming unfolded.
THE PROPHECIES’ MESSAGE FOR US.
Some today can receive the outpouring of the Spirit, and receive the prophetic revelations of the second coming. Jesus is seeking for such people, and the Holy Spirit is anxious to so bless any who will accept this ministry of a Simeon.
In our last days on this sinful earth, we are watching a plan for Jesus’ second coming unfold. It means persecution, it means mockings, it means rejections, and it means a final escape up to the arms of Jesus in the clouds, which we call the rapture. That event will make it worth it all. Mary watched Jesus suffer, die on a cruel cross. Her reunion with Him after His resurrection, made it worth it all.