God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. 1 Peter 5:5 (NIV) Back in the 12th century there was a monk by the name of Bernard of Clairvaux. He was asked by a friend to write a book on humility. Bernard said he didn’t know enough about humility...
Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. Luke 2:25
Simeon, who testified that Jesus is the Christ, the Promised One of God, is simply described as “a man in Jerusalem” (2:25). We don’t know much about him, but here is what we do know:
He was righteous
That speaks to his relationships with other people. Simeon was a man of his word. He did what was right. He could be trusted in business and counted on as a friend. He was a man of character and integrity.
He was devout
That speaks to his relationship with God. Simeon loved God, worshipped God, served God, and prayed to God. God carried weight in his mind and in his heart.
These two belong together: He was righteous and devout. Some people like to point out that they are honest and upright. Yes, but what about devotion to God? Others like to talk about their devotion to God. Yes, but what about doing right in regard to others?
He was waiting for the consolation of Israel
That speaks to his hope. Simeon’s confidence in life and in death was not in his devout and upright life. It was not in the temple or in its rituals. He was waiting for the One to whom all of the Old Testament points, the Promised One (or “consolation of Israel”).
The Holy Spirit was upon him
The presence of God rested on this man. When people were with Simeon they felt that they had come near to the Lord. Something marked him as a person who walked closely with God.
Wouldn’t you love to have this said about you?