When the Lord destroyed the firstborn sons of Egypt, He spared the sons of Israel by providing a lamb in their stead. Hence, all the firstborn sons belong to Him. Every firstborn male animal was sacrificed, and every firstborn son of man was redeemed (Ex. 13:12–13). Therefore, the parents of Jesus “brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord” (Luke 2:22). However, He is not redeemed from priestly service but is consecrated for “the redemption of Jerusalem” and “the consolation of Israel” (Luke 2:25, 38). For God the Father did not spare His only begotten Son, but offered Him up as the true Passover Lamb, in order to redeem His people from bondage. His cross has caused many to stumble and fall, but His blood atoned for the sins of the world and delivers us from death. We now depart in the peace of Christ because we are also raised with Him. As we receive His body and blood, we join Simeon and Anna in “giving thanks to God the Father through him,” “singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,” including the Nunc Dimittis, with thankfulness in our hearts (Luke 2:28–32, 38; Col. 3:15–17).

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