Daily Gospel Reflection – Feast of the Presentation of the Lord
February 2, 2022
Feast of the Presentation of the Lord
Gospel: Lk 2:22-32
When the days were completed for their purification according to the law of Moses, Mary and Joseph took Jesus up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord, just as it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that opens the womb shall be consecrated to the Lord, and to offer the sacrifice of a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons, in accordance with the dictate in the law of the Lord. Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon. This man was righteous and devout, awaiting the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Christ of the Lord. He came in the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus to perform the custom of the law in regard to him, he took him into his arms and blessed God, saying: “Now, Master, you may let your servant go in peace, according to your word, for my eyes have seen your salvation, which you prepared in the sight of all the peoples: a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and glory for your people Israel.”
*United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
Bishop Robert Barron
Friends, today’s Gospel tells the story of the presentation of Jesus in the temple. The temple was, in practically a literal sense, the dwelling place of the Lord. In the temple, divinity and humanity embraced, and the human race was brought back online with God.
But the sins of the nation had, according to the prophet Ezekiel, caused the glory of the Lord to depart from the temple. Therefore, one of the deepest aspirations of Israel’s people was to reestablish the temple as the place of right praise so that the glory of the Lord might return. When Joseph and Mary bring the infant Jesus into the temple, therefore, we are meant to appreciate that the prophecy of Ezekiel is being fulfilled. The glory of Yahweh is returning to his favorite dwelling. And this is precisely what Simeon sees.
The old seer is a symbol of ancient Israel, watching and waiting for the coming of the Messiah. Simeon knew all of the old prophecies; he embodied the expectation of the nation; and the Holy Spirit had given him the revelation that he would not die until he had laid eyes on his Savior.