Today's devotion from Luke 2. Luke 2 is beloved by many Christians for its narrative of the nativity. Of course the birth of Jesus is central, but the cast of characters testifying about this miraculous birth touches many of us. Who doesn't relate to the humble shepherds being met by angelic hosts? Can the beauty of His presentation be overstated? We marvel at Simeon and Anna's response to meeting their Savior.
Yet, I was struck by a single verse offering a simple statement, "Every year his parents traveled to Jerusalem for the Passover Festival." (Luke 2:41, CSB) His family was devout, and participated in the festival annually in Jerusalem. Every year, they journeyed to Jerusalem where they celebrated the Passover.
The festival was established to remind the people of their bondage in Egypt and God's supernatural work to free them. They recounted the blood that was necessary to insure God's judgment would pass over them. The meal was to be eaten quickly while prepared to travel because freedom was at hand. Every year, the family gathered to celebrate a festival in Jerusalem in which they remembered the moment of salvation was upon them.
I wonder how many times the young Jesus might have wandered past an upper room where, one day, He would institute the Lord's Supper and prepare His disciples for His death? I wonder how many broken, hurting people looked on the young man while longing to experience forgiveness and healing? Yet, the means of their salvation was at hand, but God's plan was not ready. I am amazed by His persistence, patience, and dedication to making the gospel available to us ordinary sinners.