“You know,” Stan began one morning, “there is a whole bunch of people I pray for and about each day.”
“What kind of prayers?” I asked.
“Particular needs, such as health, well-being, and the like,” Stan replied, “but there is a list of people I pray specifically for them to come to confession, repentance, and salvation.”
“And,” he continued, “My prayer for them is that God will do with them what He did with Simeon.”
“Simeon,” I said, “who’s that and what did God do with him?”
“Luke’s gospel,” Stan replied, “has a short mention of a man named Simeon, described as a righteous man who lived in Jerusalem around the time when Jesus was born and subsequently brought to the temple to be circumcised on the eighth day.”
“What could this possibly have to do with your prayers today for people to come to faith?” I asked.
“Ir’s how Luke describes how the Holy Spirit revealed to Simeon that he would not die before he had seen the Christ.”
“So,” I replied, “this Simeon was filled with the Holy Spirit?”
“”Doesn’t say that,” Stan said. “It says that the Holy Spirit was ‘upon him’.”
“And that’s different?” I asked. “Having the Holy Spirit on rather than in?”
“Yeah,” Stan replied, “there is a difference, but that’s another subject for another day. The important thing for me right now is that Simeon was told by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen Jesus the Christ.”
“And that’s your prayer for the unsaved,” I commented, “that they will see Jesus before their time here is finished.”
“That’s it,” Stan said. “Each one of us only has until we pass into eternity to make the decision to accept by faith God’s provision of redemption and salvation through Jesus’ finished work on the cross. Once our time here is finished, it’s too late to see Jesus as the Christ.”
“So you pray for a revelation similar to the one given to Simeon?” I commented. “I think I will add that to how and what I pray for all of those people in my life who have not yet come to faith.”
“That God will open them to see before it’s too late,” Stan replied. “See, accept, and embrace.”
Bible verses to consider:
And behold there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon; and this man was righteous and devout, looking for the consolidation of Israel; and the Holy Spirit was upon him. And it was revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. Luke 2:25-26.
The Lord is not slow about His promises, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. 2 Peter 3:9.
Prayer: Thank you, Father, for your provision of redemption and salvation through the finished work of Jesus on the cross. Thank you for those who brought me to the truth so I could accept by faith your free and gracious gift of life eternally with you when my time here is completed. Thank you that I was able to make that decision before it was too late. I pray for all to come to repentance and to see Jesus as the Christ before it’s too late for them. Please draw each one to you and open them to see, accept, and embrace all you have for them on both sides of eternity. Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.
Think on this: Salvation is God’s free and gracious gift that each person can accept by faith. Do you have the assurance of spending eternity in God’s presence when your time here is completed? If no, why? What is standing in the way? If you have the assurance of salvation, how are you doing in bringing others to the truth — or in bringing the truth to them — so they, too, will have the same assurance? As well as you would like? As well as God would like? If you sense changes may be needed, how are those changes going to happen? Is that what you would like? Why or why not?