Friday, February 2, 2007

The Presentation of Our Lord

And when the time came for their purification according to the Law of Moses, they brought Him up to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord. [Luke 2:22]

Doesn’t this verse strike you as funny? As if Joseph and Mary were bringing Jesus to the temple to say to God, “See? Here He is”, as if God didn’t know about Him until they presented Him to Him. God was the one who told them about Jesus, that He would be their son, that He would be the Savior.

But the reason is given: (as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every male who first opens the womb shall be called holy to the Lord”). [Luke 2:23] Jesus from the beginning of His sojourn on earth was fulfilling the Law of God, something we have not done. That’s why He came. He came to fulfill what we are unable to do.

And at the end of His sojourn on earth He did something else: He was presented once again before God, this time on the cross, as a sacrifice for the sin of the world. When Joseph and Mary presented Jesus to God in the temple they offered the customary sacrifices [Luke 2:24]. Little did they realize that that is nothing compared to the sacrifice that would be offered up in thirty years to the very same God. It would be their own son. It would be the Son. The Son of God. Born of Mary. Suffered under Pontius Pilate. Presented to God the Father as a sacrifice for all born in sin.

Jesus Christ now presents us before the Heavenly Father as saints who are covered with His righteousness.

[Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.]

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I never thought about the sacrifices when Jesus was presented pointing towards His sacrifice 30 years later. Or the idea of Joseph and Mary not realizing it. --Monica