“…she gave thanks to the Lord, and spoke of Him to all those who looked for redemption in Jerusalem.” – Luke 2:38
Scripture reading: Luke 2:36-38
The witnesses to the birth of Christ are a complete set of representatives. They represent old and young, male and female, Jew and Gentile, rich and poor. Here the focus is on Anna, a prophetess. Prophetesses were relatively rare in the time of the scriptures. They seem to have been most prominent in spiritually dark times. When men failed to lead and speak God’s Word, the Lord used dedicated and godly women in more visible ways.
For about 400 years before the coming of Christ, we do not hear of a single true prophet. Here, at the end of that age, we see a dedicated prophetess. Anna was a widow who had lost her husband at a young age. Since then, for many decades, she had lived at the temple, fasting and praying, night and day. Some interpret the language to indicate that she would have been well over 100 years old, though the 84 years could also refer to her age.
She was another symbol of the very long time that believers waited for the Saviour. It is a reminder that some will have to wait a lifetime for prayers to be answered. Now, however, she is a picture of thanksgiving and joyful evangelism! When we truly grasp the joy of Christ’s coming, we will begin to speak of Him to others. The Lord Jesus promises that “…whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 10:32).
Suggestion for prayer
Pray that more believers would speak about the glory of Christ to their brothers and sisters in the church.
Pastor Robert VanDoodewaard currently serves the Free Reformed Church in Powassan, Ontario, Canada as a minister of the gospel.