Amazing God, Awesome Power: VBS 2012, Topical Studies

God Has Power Over Sin (Luke 2:22-38) VBS Day 3

Jesus presented in the Temple in Luke 2:22-38

In this passage that we will be looking at today we will see three elements: the setting which is tied to his parents faithful following of the law (v.22-24), the description and prophecy of Simeon (v. 25-35), and Anna’s reaction (v. 36-38) Many themes dominate this crucial text.  Jesus is the promised child who represents God’s coming salvation to Israel and the nations.  However, the first warning note also comes:  Jesus will divide Israel.  There is a promise of fulfillment, but not all is good.  Jesus forces choices and, as a result, some people will fall rather than rise (Bock, 1994).

First, we see how Joseph and Mary were devout Jews.  We see that Jesus grew up in a poor and deeply devout Jewish household where he was taught all things according to the law of the Lord.  Although the era of the law and the prophets may be passing away, but it is not because Jesus opposes the law and the prophets, rather he fulfills them.

However, the focal point of this passage is Simeon’s farewell to the World.  Here we see a little foreshadowing going on.  We see two very old saints Simeon and Anna, their Old Testament faith welcomes Jesus with open arms because he fits perfectly as the goal or climax of their faith.  They knew that this was the one that God had foretold in scripture and knew their Bible well enough and walked close enough to God to realize it.

However, we will see later on that hypocrites that claim to be Godly saints will reject and persecute him.  This is a fundamental truth that will affect the way we read our Bibles: with Jesus comes a new era, but the old when properly understood is not against the new but in harmony with it.

So how did Simeon and Anna know that Jesus was the messiah?  Mainly because they knew their Bibles well.  There are 1,093 prophecies in the Bible that refer to Jesus and His Church, and each one of those prophecies was fulfilled!  There are 333 prophecies that Jesus is going to fulfill during his life, death, resurrection, Ascension, etc.  30 are fulfilled just on the day He dies.  The Old Testament contains 48 prophecies that pertain to the crucifixion of Jesus.
In considering the fact that several different prophets who lived in separate communities over a span of a 1,000 years made predictions of Christ 500 years before His birth, the odds against these prophecies coming true are simply beyond our wildest comprehension.  For example, the chances of one man (Jesus) fulfilling just 8 of the prophecies attributed to Him are one in 10 to the 17th power (that’s a number with 17 zeroes).
Someone has figured out the statistical probability of that happening — if you put an X on one quarter, and filled the state of Texas with stacks of 7 quarters each, the likelihood of a helicopter landing and finding that one quarter matches the odds of one man fulfilling all those prophecies as Jesus did.
The Bible with all its fulfilled prophecies proves the existence of God.  Through the law of probability and the mathematical odds of prophecy being fulfilled, we can know assuredly that there was a divine Designer and Author of the Bible.  The same One who brought into existence the universe.

Therefore, we can conclude that there is a God because universal moral laws exist, creation needs a creator, the design of the universe needs a designer, and because of the probability of all of the fulfilled prophecies, happening by chance is just simply unbelievable.  Therefore, we can conclude that there is a God and that God is the God of the Bible.

Which is extremely good news, because the God of the Bible, loves each one of you and has sent his only son to die for you so that you will be able to stand before Him righteous.  And you can make sure that you are adopted into His family by repenting of your sins and accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord, Savior, and Treasure.
Finally, God, the Creator of the universe and author of our salvation tells us: “Remember the former things, those of long ago; I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me.  I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come.  I say: My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please” (Isaiah 46:9-10).

Questions:

Where did Jesus’ parents take Him to be presented to the Lord? (Jerusalem)

What kind of man was Simeon? (Follower of God, righteous, devout filled with the Holy Spirit)

What did Simeon do when he saw Jesus?  (He praised God and claimed Jesus as the light for Gentiles; that he blessed Jesus.)

Who was Anna? (a prophetess and widow, who spent her life worshipping God and waiting for the messiah)

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