Meeting the Messiah: (An alternative study for Luke 2)
Talk about a time in your life when you met someone unexpectedly. Was it awkward? exciting? disappointing? fun?
Read Luke 2:25-35. Have several people talk about one or two verses that stick in their mind when reading this passage.
Verse 25 says that Simeon was "righteous" and "devout". Have you ever known someone you could describe using those words? What do you think those words mean?
WORD STUDY: The word "righteous" could also be translated "equitable". It is really a reference to Simeon's treatment of other people. The word "devout" could also be translated "pious". It is a reference to Simeon's relationship to God.
How does our relationship with other people impact our relationship with God? How does our relationship with God impact our relationship with other people?
Read verse 29. Once Simeon met Jesus, he was ready to die. What are 2-3 things you want to accomplish or see happen before you die? Do you have plans to make those things happen?
What do you think God wants to do through you before you die?
Simeon said to Joseph and Mary that "This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel". What do you think he meant be this? (1 Peter 2:4-8 may provide some helpful insight)
Simeon said that Jesus would be a sign. What do you think this sign was pointing to? Why do you think Simeon said that some would "speak against" this sign?
What are the different responses that people have to Jesus? Is it possible for Christians to ever "reject" or "speak against" Jesus (think about Peter)? Why or why not?
Simeon may not have expected to see the Messiah come as a baby, but he was still able to recognize him when He came. Can you recognize how Jesus is coming into your life right now? What is he asking you to do or be? How will you respond?