“Rest Easy”

“Rest Easy”

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“Rest Easy”
First Sunday of Christmas
December 31, 2023
Rev. Dr. Donovan Drake

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Luke 2:22-40

22 And when the days for [a]their purification according to the Law of Moses were completed, they brought Him up to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord 23 (as it is written in the Law of the Lord: “Every firstborn male that opens the womb shall be called holy to the Lord”), 24 and to offer a sacrifice according to what has been stated in the Law of the Lord: “A pair of turtledoves or two young doves.” 25 And there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon; and this man was righteous and devout, looking forward to the consolation of Israel; and the Holy Spirit was upon him. 26 And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s [b]Christ. 27 And he came [c]by the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, [d]to carry out for Him the custom of the Law, 28 then he took Him in his arms, and blessed God, and said, 29 “Now, Lord, You are letting Your bond-servant depart in peace, According to Your word; 30 For my eyes have seen Your salvation, 31 Which You have prepared in the presence of all the peoples: 32 A light for revelation [e]for the Gentiles, And the glory of Your people Israel.” 33 And His father and mother were amazed at the things which were being said about Him. 34 And Simeon blessed them and said to His mother Mary, “Behold, this Child is appointed for the fall and [f]rise of many in Israel, and as a sign to be [g]opposed— 35 and a sword will pierce your own soul—to the end that thoughts from many hearts may be revealed.” 36 And there was a prophetess, [h]Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was advanced in [i]years and had lived with her husband for seven years after her [j]marriage, 37 and then as a widow to the age of eighty-four. She did not leave the temple grounds, serving night and day with fasts and prayers. 38 And at that very [k]moment she came up and began giving thanks to God, and continued to speak about Him to all those who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem. 39 And when His parents had completed everything in accordance with the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee, to their own city of Nazareth. 40 Now the Child continued to grow and to become strong, [l]increasing in wisdom; and the favor of God was upon Him.