“This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many … And a sword will pierce your own soul too.”
On the cross Jesus said to his mother, “Woman, here is your son,” and to John, “Here is your mother” (John 19:26-27). What might Mary have been thinking as she heard those words?
A hundred things could have raced through her mind but, at least at some point, she must have recalled the prophecy that Simeon had spoken when Jesus was only eight days old.
Mary and Joseph had brought Jesus to the temple to present him to the Lord for circumcision, according to custom. That’s when they met Simeon. He had approached them as they entered the temple, and he had scooped Jesus up in his arms. This was the child he had been waiting for! This was the child God himself had promised Simeon he would see before he died!
And Simeon said, “Sovereign Lord … you may now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation.” But as Simeon handed Jesus back to his parents, he declared that one day this child would cause the rising and falling of many, depending on whether they would receive him as Messiah and Savior. “And a sword will pierce your own soul too,” he said to Mary.
As she stood at the foot of the cross, watching her Son give up his life, Mary must have felt a stabbing pain in her soul, a sorrow too deep for words.
Father God, today Jesus still causes the rising and falling of many. Give me eyes of faith, that I may receive him as Savior and Lord of my life. Amen.
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