Anna, the prophetess
Anna the prophetess
A prophetess named Anna was also in the temple court that day. She was from the tribe of Asher and the daughter of Phanuel.[a] Anna was an aged widow who had been married only seven years before her husband passed away. After he died she chose to worship God in the temple continually. For the past eighty-four years[b] she had been serving God with night-and-day prayer and fasting.
38 While Simeon was prophesying over Mary and Joseph and the baby, Anna walked up to them and burst forth with a great chorus of praise to God for the child. From that day forward she told everyone in Jerusalem who was waiting for their redemption that the anticipated Messiah had come.
Phillips: There was also present, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel of the tribe of Asher, who was a prophetess. She was a very old woman, having had seven years’ married life and was now a widow of eighty-four. She spent her whole life in the Temple and worshipped God night and day with fastings and prayers. She came up at this very moment, praised God and spoke about Jesus to all those in Jerusalem who were expecting redemption.
We see in the above verses some of the first people to recognize the Messiah. Besides the shepherds and the wise men, Simeon and Anna were at the temple during the dedication of Jesus on the eighth day after His birth. Anna was a widow most of her life and she dedicated her life to serve God with prayer and fasting. She was rewarded for her dedication by being one of the first to recognize the Christ. Anna is a good inspiration to women everywhere. Regardless of being advanced in age and widowed most of her life, she was able to recognize the move of God. Many times women consider themselves second class citizens in the kingdom of God, however Anna proves them wrong. God has used women in His kingdom work. Many modern day intercessors are women. We don't always have to be loud and boisterous to make a difference in God's kingdom. We can silently pull down strongholds by fervent prayer and intercession. As we see the world around us we recognize the need to pull down strongholds. The Bible says, the effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. We need to fervently wrestle the principalities of wickedness and tear down the opposition to the law of God. We need to establish kingdom principles in out lives, families and our nations. The Word says blessed is the land whose God is the Lord. We need to decree Christ's lordship over our nations. We need to enforce the victory Christ won for us. Christ has triumphed over the kingdom of darkness. We as ambassadors of Christ, need to establish kingdom principles in our lives, families and in our land. Spiritual laws always supercede natural laws. Although many laws of the land contradict God's laws, in the final analysis, God's laws will be upheld. We need to be as Anna and Simeon, interceding for the return of the Messiah. Eventually Christ will return and establish His kingdom on earth. We need to occupy until then and be enforcers of God's laws in our lives and families and our nations. Sometimes we see the chaos around us and we can get overwhelmed. However the Bible says in Genesis 1:1 Darkness was on the face of the deep...the Spirit hovered over the chaos and God spoke light into being. God uses us to speak light into darkness. We reflect the light of Christ and God can create an amazing world out of the chaotic void. We intercede for the world around us and anticipate the return of our Messiah and beloved Bridegroom. Even so come Lord Jesus come. Amen.