Jewish custom dictated that Jesus (and all baby boys) must be presented at the temple and a specific sacrifice offered. Based on what Luke 2:24 says that Joseph and Mary sacrificed we know they were poor. When they went to the temple there were 2 people that we are told met them there.
The first we are told about is Simeon. We are told that he was a very godly man and he was waiting for the arrival of the Savior. The Holy Spirit had revealed to him that he would get to see the savior before he died. When Mary and Joseph arrive he takes Jesus in his arms and begins to thank the Lord for keeping His promise and allowing him to see the Savior. Simeon went on to predict that Jesus would bring light to all people. Mary and Joseph were amazed at his words.
The second person that we are told about is the widow Anna. She was 84 years old and the Bible tells that she prayed night and day at the temple. This godly woman also revealed (through God’s spirit) that Jesus was the Savior they had been awaiting.
But why did God reveal Jesus to these 2 people? I believe that because of their godly reputations God revealed Jesus to them so that others would believe that Jesus was the Savior. We often doubt our own feelings but when someone respected confirms our belief we are more sure that something is true. By having these 2 respected people declare that this was the Messiah, many would be convinced that what others were saying was true. Because both Simeon and Anna had devoted their lived to God and developed godly reputations, he used them to convince others of the Messiah’s arrival. Are you building a reputation others can trust?
- If you told your friends something outrageous would they believe you? Do you have a reputation for being trustworthy?
- I Timothy 3 says that leaders in the church must have good reputations. Are you building a reputation that would allow you to lead some day?