Simeon (Gospel of Luke)

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Simeon
Yegorov-Simeon the Righteous.jpg
Simeon the Godreceiver by Alexei Yegorov. 1830–40s
Prophet, God-receiver
Venerated in Eastern Orthodox Church
Roman Catholic Church
Anglican Communion
Lutheranism
Major shrine Church of St. Simeon in Zadar, Croatia
Feast October 8
Attributes Depicted as an elderly man, sometimes vested as a Jewish priest, often shown holding the infant Jesus
Simeon in the Temple, by Rembrandt van Rijn, 1631 Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn 145.jpg
Simeon in the Temple, by Rembrandt van Rijn, 1631

Simeon (Simeon the God-receiver) at the Temple is the "just and devout" man of Jerusalem who, according to Luke 2:25–35 , met Mary, Joseph, and Jesus as they entered the Temple to fulfill the requirements of the Law of Moses on the 40th day from Jesus' birth at the presentation of Jesus at the Temple.

Second Temple Jewish Temple on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem between 516 BC and 70 AD

The Second Temple was the Jewish holy temple which stood on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem during the Second Temple period, between 516 BCE and 70 CE. It replaced Solomon's Temple, which was destroyed by the Neo-Babylonian Empire in 586 BCE, when Jerusalem was conquered and part of the population of the Kingdom of Judah was taken into exile to Babylon.

Jerusalem City in the Middle East

Jerusalem is a city in the Middle East, located on a plateau in the Judaean Mountains between the Mediterranean and the Dead Sea. It is one of the oldest cities in the world, and is considered holy to the three major Abrahamic religions—Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Both Israel and the Palestinian Authority claim Jerusalem as their capital, as Israel maintains its primary governmental institutions there and the State of Palestine ultimately foresees it as its seat of power; however, neither claim is widely recognized internationally.

Mary, mother of Jesus religious figure and mother of Jesus of Nazareth

Mary was a first-century BC Galilean Jewish woman of Nazareth, and the mother of Jesus, according to the New Testament and the Qur'an.

Contents

According to the Biblical account, Simeon had been visited by the Holy Spirit and told that he would not die until he had seen the Lord's Christ. On taking Jesus into his arms he uttered a prayer, which is still used liturgically as the Latin Nunc dimittis in many Christian churches, and gave a prophecy alluding to the crucifixion.

Holy Spirit is understood differently among the Abrahamic religions. The term is also used to describe aspects of other religions and belief structures.

Liturgy is the customary public worship performed by a religious group. As a religious phenomenon, liturgy represents a communal response to and participation in the sacred through activity reflecting praise, thanksgiving, supplication or repentance. It forms a basis for establishing a relationship with a divine agency, as well as with other participants in the liturgy.

Nunc dimittis passage from the Gospel of Luke

The Nunc dimittis ; also known as the Song of Simeon or the Canticle of Simeon, is a canticle taken from the second chapter of the Gospel of Luke and known by its Latin name from its incipit, the opening words, of the Vulgate translation of the passage, meaning "Now you dismiss". Since the 4th century it has been used in services of evening worship such as Compline, Vespers, and Evensong.

In some Christian traditions, this meeting is commemorated on February 2 as Candlemas, or more formally, the Presentation of the Lord, the Meeting of the Lord, or the Purification of the Virgin. His prophecy is used in the context of Our Lady of Sorrows. Simeon is venerated as a saint in the Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox traditions. His feast day is October 8 in the revised Martyrology of the Roman Catholic Church.

Candlemas Pagan then Christian holiday

Candlemas, also known as the Feast of the Presentation of Our Lord Jesus and the Feast of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary, is a Christian Holy Day commemorating the presentation of Jesus at the Temple. It is based upon the account of the presentation of Jesus in Luke 2:22–40. In accordance with Leviticus 12: a woman was to be presented for purification by sacrifice 33 days after a boy's circumcision. It falls on February 2, which is traditionally the 40th day of the Christmas–Epiphany season. While it is customary for Christians in some countries to remove their Christmas decorations on Twelfth Night, those in other Christian countries historically remove them on Candlemas. On Candlemas, many Christians also bring their candles to their local church, where they are blessed and then used for the rest of the year; for Christians, these blessed candles serve as a symbol of Jesus Christ, who referred to himself as the Light of the World.

Our Lady of Sorrows title of Mary, mother of Jesus

Our Lady of Sorrows, Our Lady of Dolours, the Sorrowful Mother or Mother of Sorrows, and Our Lady of Piety, Our Lady of the Seven Sorrows or Our Lady of the Seven Dolours are names by which the Virgin Mary is referred to in relation to sorrows in her life. As Mater Dolorosa, it is also a key subject for Marian art in the Catholic Church.

Saint one who has been recognized for having an exceptional degree of holiness, sanctity, and virtue

A saint is a person who is recognized as having an exceptional degree of holiness or likeness or closeness to God. However, the use of the term "saint" depends on the context and denomination. In Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Anglican, Oriental Orthodox, and Lutheran doctrine, all of their faithful deceased in Heaven are considered to be saints, but some are considered worthy of greater honor or emulation; official ecclesiastical recognition, and consequently veneration, is given to some saints through the process of canonization in the Catholic Church or glorification in the Eastern Orthodox Church.

New Testament

The sole mention in the New Testament of Simeon is as follows:

Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout, looking for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Lord's Christ. And inspired by the Spirit he came into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him according to the custom of the law, he took him up in his arms and blessed God and said, "Lord, now let your servant depart in peace, according to your word; for my eyes have seen your salvation which you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to your people Israel." And his father and his mother marveled at what was said about him; 34 and Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, "Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign that is spoken against (and a sword will pierce through your own soul also), that thoughts out of many hearts may be revealed." - Luke 2:25 , RSV-2CE

Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition

The Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition is an English translation of the Bible first published in 1966. In 1965, the Catholic Biblical Association adapted, under the editorship of Bernard Orchard OSB and Reginald C. Fuller, the Revised Standard Version (RSV) for Catholic use. It contains the deuterocanonical books of the Old Testament placed in the traditional order of the Vulgate. The editors' stated aim for the RSV Catholic Edition was "to make the minimum number of alterations, and to change only what seemed absolutely necessary in the light of Catholic tradition."

The text suggests that Simeon was the officiating priest. Some writers have identified this Simeon with Shimon ben Hillel, although Hillel was not a priest. [1]

In Christian tradition

Title

Hagiography Biography of a Christian saint

A hagiography is a biography of a saint or an ecclesiastical leader. The term hagiography may be used to refer to the biography of a saint or highly developed spiritual being in any of the world's spiritual traditions.

Johannes Eccard German composer and conductor

Johannes Eccard (1553–1611) was a German composer and kapellmeister. He was an early principal conductor at the Berlin court chapel.

Age

According to a tradition in the Eastern Orthodox Church, Simeon had been one of the seventy-two translators of the Septuagint. As he hesitated over the translation of Isaiah 7:14 (LXX: "Behold, a virgin shall conceive...") and was going to correct it to γυνή (woman), an angel appeared to him and told him that he would not die until he had seen the Christ born of a virgin. This would make him well over two hundred years old at the time of the meeting described in Luke, and therefore miraculously long-lived. [5]

Festal observances

The Meeting of Our Lord (Russian icon, 15th century) Sretenie.jpg
The Meeting of Our Lord (Russian icon, 15th century)

The events in the life of Saint Simeon the Righteous are observed on both February 2 and 3. The observances of the first day center around memorializing the act of Mary undergoing an act of ritual purification, and presenting Jesus, her child, to the Temple, a feast day known as the Presentation of Jesus at the Temple. Since this day focuses more on Jesus and Mary, the observation on February 3 is specific to St. Simeon, who was allowed to die after seeing the Christ (or Messiah) born of a virgin. In Christian tradition, the day of a saint's death is often celebrated as the saint's feast day.

Under Mosaic law, a mother who had given birth to a man-child was considered unclean for seven days; moreover she was to remain for three and thirty days "in the blood of her purification", which makes a total of 40 days. The Christian Feast of the Purification therefore corresponds to the day on which Mary, according to Jewish law (see Leviticus 12:2–8), should have attended a ceremony of ritual purification.[ citation needed ] The Gospel of Luke 2:22–39 relates that Mary was purified according to the religious law, followed by Jesus's presentation in the Jerusalem temple, and this explains the formal names given to the festival.

In the liturgy of Evening prayer in the Anglican communion, Anglicans recite the Nunc dimittis – or sing it in Evensong in the canticle known as the Song of Simeon – traditionally, every evening. It is also used in the Roman Catholic Compline and Orthodox Vespers. The Nunc dimittis has been set to music by many notable composers, such as Rachmaninoff (All-Night Vigil).

The feast on February 2 is often referred to as Candlemas , as in honor of the ritual purification of the Virgin Mary, candles (of beeswax) which will be used for the entire year are brought into a church and blessed. In the Roman Catholic Church, the Presentation is the fourth Joyful Mystery of the Rosary. In the Church of England, the Presentation of Christ in the Temple is a Principal Feast. In the Eastern Orthodox Church, it is one of the twelve Great Feasts.

February 2

Chest of Saint Simeon from year 1380 in Zadar, photographed around 1900 Simeon Schrein (Zadar).jpg
Chest of Saint Simeon from year 1380 in Zadar, photographed around 1900
Chest of Saint Simeon today Skrinja sv.Simuna, Zadar (Croatia) - zavjesa.jpg
Chest of Saint Simeon today

This feast day has a number of different names:

February 3

Simeon the Righteous is commemorated in his own right on February 3. In the Anglican Communion, Simeon is not venerated with a festal observance, and February 3 is set aside to recognize Anskar (801–865), a missionary, Archbishop of Hamburg-Bremen and first Bishop in Sweden, 864.

In the Eastern Orthodox tradition, Simeon is commemorated with Anna the Prophetess on February 3 on the Feast of the Holy and Righteous Simeon the God-Receiver and Anna the Prophetess.

February 16

While both the Catholic and Orthodox Churches agree on the setting of the date of Candlemas on the 40th day after Christmas (in accordance with the Mosaic Law), the difference in the marking of Christmas – December 25 results over a theological dispute related to the adoption of the Gregorian calendar over the older Julian Calendar. December 25 currently occurs 13 days later on the Julian Calendar than on the Gregorian calendar. The Gregorian revision of the calendar occurred in 1582, well after the Great Schism between the Eastern and Western Christian churches in 1054.

As a result, many Orthodox Christians celebrate St. Simeon's feast day on February 16. As mentioned above, the Orthodox Church celebrates St. Simeon on the day after the Feast of the Presentation, that is to say, February 3. However, for those churches which follow the traditional Julian Calendar, February 3 falls on February 16 of the modern Gregorian Calendar.[ citation needed ]

The Armenian Apostolic Church celebrates the Nativity of Christ on January 6, and so their celebration of the Presentation, which they call The Coming of the Son of God into the Temple is on February 14.

See also

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References

  1. The Rabbinic Traditions about the Pharisees Before 70: The houses – Page 217 Jacob Neusner – 1971 "It is not integral to the story, and some say is immediately corrected : Hillel was not a priest (as if Yohanan was!), and therefore could not have been the master to whom the story is assigned. Perhaps someone had a special interest in .."
  2. The Tomb of St. Simeon the Prophet by Charles Seymour, Jr. (Yale University)
  3. Monks of Ramsgate Abbey, The Book of Saints: a Dictionary of Servants of God canonized by the Catholic Church, 1921, p. 245
  4. Meeting Simeon and Anna in the Temple (Luke 2:21–38)
  5. Orthodox Church in America, Holy, Righteous Simeon the God-Receiver