THE THIRD NOEL
LUKE 2: 29 - 32
(PAGE 1499 COME ALIVE BIBLE)
JESUS CHRIST's birth resulted in polyphony of praise offered by
angels and earthlings alike.
Mary offered the first Noel, "The Magnificat."
The angels shared the second Noel, "Gloria in Excelsis Deo."
Now the third Noel. Forty days after Christ's birth Mary and
Joseph left Bethlehem and journeyed about ten miles to
neighboring Jerusalem and the Temple for a special service of
consecration. There they encountered the elderly Simeon who
voiced the third Noel: "Nunc Dimittis," which in Latin means
"Now let Thy servant depart." In it he reveals Christ to be:
I.HE IS A STANDARD (Luke 2: 30 - 32)
He is God the Father's standard for ALL PEOPLE. He is as
obtrusive and fixed as the stars in the solar system. His
coming resulted in the "taking off from the Gentiles the veil."
His coming was intended to be the crowning glory of Israel.
The artist, Rossetti, has painted a humble oriental house with
Jesus looking out a window. The, as of then unrepentant Mary
Magdalene, is frolicking down the street with a rowdy group.
She turns her head and their gazes meet. On her face is an
expression of horror and dismay. In His face she sees herself
as she is and is filled with self-loathing, self-disgust. Jesus
reveals to each of us what we think of ourself = humble or
arrogant, AND of God = skeptical or submissive.
By this Standard, established by Heaven, Christ, may riseand
fall. Within eighty years of His death a governor of a Roman
province wrote: "People are deserting pagan temples, and are
gathering in illegal con ...
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