When Sorry Won’t Do
“And behold, there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon, and this man was just and devout, waiting for the Consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him” (Luke 2:25, NKJV).
In his historical narrative of the nativity, Dr. Luke tells of one Simeon, a devout man who had diligently studied the messianic prophecies. While worshiping in the temple of Jerusalem, he observed a family presenting their first-born son to the Lord. Under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, Simeon “is deeply impressed that the infant being presented to the Lord is the Consolation of Israel, the One he has longed to see.”–The Desire of Ages, p. 55. Enraptured by this revelation, Simeon becomes the first among the worshipers to recognize and identify Christ as the Consolation of Israel.
Fully satisfied that he had at last seen the long-expected Consolation of Israel, Simeon takes the infant “in his arms and presents it to God, while a joy that he has never before felt enters his soul.” Ibid. In this momentous discovery, Simeon saw in the infant Christ one who was “a light to bring revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of Your people Israel” (Luke 2:32, NKJV). To him, Christ was the one who would bring consolation and “bind up the brokenhearted” (Isaiah 61:1, NIV).
Like all the other fascinating titles of Jesus, this one has special significance for God’s people in every period of human history. Today, as in Simeon’s day, Jesus Christ remains the Consolation of spiritual Israel. As Paul so aptly puts it, He is our “strong consolation” (Hebrews 6:18, NKJV). In all the complexities and vicissitudes of life, Jesus Christ is our strong consolation. What greater consolation can there be than the promise, “I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5, NKJV)? “Christ, the consolation of Israel, had come unto his own, but his own received him not. He must find new bottles to contain his new wine.”–Signs of the Times, September 19, 1892. How comforting to know that Jesus Christ is our strong consolation!
My Prayer Today: Lord, I am comforted by the knowledge that Jesus is my consolation. Amen!