Simeon Praises the Lord
The time came for Mary and Joseph to do what the Law of Moses says a mother is supposed to do after her baby is born.
n 2.22 after her baby is born: After a Jewish mother gave birth to a son, she was considered “unclean” and had to stay home until he was circumcised (see the note at 1.59). Then she had to stay home for another 33 days, before offering a sacrifice to the Lord.
They took Jesus to the temple in Jerusalem and presented him to the Lord,
just as the Law of the Lord says, “Each first-born
o 2.23 first-born: See the note at 2.7.
baby boy belongs to the Lord.”
The Law of the Lord also says that parents have to offer a sacrifice, giving at least a pair of doves or two young pigeons. So that is what Mary and Joseph did.
25 At this time a man named Simeon was living in Jerusalem. Simeon was a good man. He loved God and was waiting for God to save the people of Israel. God's Spirit came to him
26 and told him that he would not die until he had seen Christ the Lord.
27 When Mary and Joseph brought Jesus to the temple to do what the Law of Moses says should be done for a new baby, the Spirit told Simeon to go into the temple.
28 Simeon took the baby Jesus in his arms and praised God,
29 “Lord, I am your servant,
and now I can die in peace,
because you have kept
your promise to me.
30 With my own eyes I have seen
what you have done
to save your people,
31 and foreign nations
will also see this.
Your mighty power is a light
2.32 Is 42.6; 49.6; 52.10.
for all nations,
and it will bring honor
to your people Israel.”
33 Jesus' parents were surprised at what Simeon had said.
34 Then he blessed them and told Mary, “This child of yours will cause many people in Israel to fall and others to stand. The child will be like a warning sign. Many people will reject him,
35 and you, Mary, will suffer as though you had been stabbed by a dagger. But all this will show what people are really thinking.”
Anna Speaks about the Child Jesus
The prophet Anna was also there in the temple. She was the daughter of Phanuel from the tribe of Asher, and she was very old. In her youth she had been married for seven years, but her husband died.
And now she was eighty-four years old.
p 2.37 And now she was eighty-four years old: Or “And now she had been a widow for eighty-four years.”
Night and day she served God in the temple by praying and often going without eating.
q 2.37 without eating: The Jewish people sometimes went without eating (also called “fasting”) to show their love for God or to show sorrow for their sins.
38 At that time Anna came in and praised God. She spoke about the child Jesus to everyone who hoped for Jerusalem to be set free.
The Return to Nazareth
After Joseph and Mary had done everything that the Law of the Lord commands, they returned home to Nazareth in Galilee.