Listen to this devotional:
Luke 2:29-32 – Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all people, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel. (NIV)
During the holiday season, I especially enjoy sending old-fashioned greeting cards to family and friends as an expression of my faith. Since I am very selective about my choice in cards, I carefully take the opportunity to remind others about the true meaning of this special holiday.
One year, I was blessed to find a beautiful Christmas card designed by the "Friends Of Israel" ministry. An excellent representation of the gospel message was depicted in the old prophet Simeon, whom the Lord revealed would not die until he saw the Messiah of Israel. It is one of my favourite Scriptures, for two reasons. Firstly, it clearly identifies salvation as a person, not an act. Secondly, the same magnificent light which was revealed to Simeon had a purpose for both the Gentile nations and Israel: for the one, it was revelation, and for the other, glory.
John 17:3 – Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. (NIV)
This Scripture verse is another of my favourites, because it clearly defines the true meaning of eternal life. This life does not simply exist after death, but involves the intimate knowledge of the true God while we live. So, connecting both of today's Scripture passages, eternal life begins with knowledge of the true God, and that knowledge results in the experience of salvation through the Person of His Son.
Salvation and eternal life are the priceless gifts that God has given to those who believe. According to the Scriptures, we cannot have one without the other. Psalm 36:9 states, "For with you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light." (NIV) Thus, at the very moment of faith, His light of revelation touches the eyes of our heart, allowing the very life of God to dwell in us.
Prayer: Lord, we praise You for the people walking in darkness who have seen this great light of revelation in the face of Your Son, Jesus Christ. We thank You that through Him, we have the assurance of eternal life. Now Lord, let Your servants rise and shine, for Your glory has risen upon us. Permit us to proclaim Your peace to those living in the shadow of death. And all God's people will say "Amen!"