Which two candles are we lighting tonight and what do they symbolize? Yes, the Prophesy candle symbolizing the hope for Jesus that the prophesies brought and the Bethlehem candle symbolizing our humble obedience to God’s big plans
Most people didn’t know anything significant was happening when Jesus was born, but God told some special people about it. When Jesus was still a tiny baby, Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem for the consecration ceremony, like God required for all first born boys. A man named Simeon was at the temple to. The Holy Spirit had told Simeon that he would not die until he had seen Jesus and the Holy Spirit told him to go to the Temple that day. (Luke 2:21-28) When Simeon saw baby Jesus, he prophesied, saying:
“Sovereign Lord, now let your servant die in peace, as you have promised. I have seen your salvation, which you have prepared for all people. He is a light to reveal God to the nations, and he is the glory of your people Israel!”
Jesus’ parents were amazed at what was being said about him. Then Simeon blessed them, and he said to Mary, the baby’s mother, “This child is destined to cause many in Israel to fall, but he will be a joy to many others. He has been sent as a sign from God, but many will oppose him. As a result, the deepest thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your very soul.” Luke 2:29-35
A prophet named Anna was also at the Temple:
She came along just as Simeon was talking with Mary and Joseph, and she began praising God. She talked about the child to everyone who had been waiting expectantly for God to rescue Jerusalem. When Jesus’ parents had fulfilled all the requirements of the law of the Lord, they returned home to Nazareth in Galilee. Luke 2: 38-39
God had told both Simeon and Anna that Jesus would be born soon and they both believed God and waited patiently. They both got to play a role in Jesus’ birth because they listened for God's voice and obeyed when God spoke. The Holy Spirit can speak to us and show us things that others cannot know or understand if we prepare listen and obey God.