Engraved into the palm of His hands

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9 December, 2018Simon Dent

God's love has always been for the world. Every human being has been the target of his compassion and grace. It is for this reason that Jesus has entered our world through a particular people and their history, the Jews. His love is not generic. It is grounded in real human experience, even if that human experience is alienated from God by its own darkness. But he has come as the world’s Saviour. The world's gift and the world’s only hope. Why? Because God has engraved us into the palm of his hands.

25 Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. 26 It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. 27 Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, 28 Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:

29  ‘Sovereign Lord, as you have promised,

    you may now dismiss your servant in peace.

30  For my eyes have seen your salvation,

31  which you have prepared in the sight of all nations:

32  a light for revelation to the Gentiles,

    and the glory of your people Israel.’

33 The child’s father and mother marvelled at what was said about him. 34 Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: ‘This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, 35 so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.’

13 Shout for joy, you heavens;

    rejoice, you earth;

    burst into song, you mountains!

For the Lord comforts his people

    and will have compassion on his afflicted ones.

14  But Zion said, ‘The Lord has forsaken me,

    the Lord has forgotten me.’

15  ‘Can a mother forget the baby at her breast

    and have no compassion on the child she has borne?

Though she may forget,

    I will not forget you!

16  See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands;

    your walls are ever before me.

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