"And behold, there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon, and this man was just and devout, waiting 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 would not see death before he had seen the Lord's Christ. So he came by the Spirit 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 You are letting Your servant depart in peace, according to Your word; for my eyes have seen Your salvation which You have prepared before the face of all peoples, a light to bring revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of Your people Israel.' "
The oldest member of my parish here (97 years) passed away early Sunday morning. When I was with her on Saturday, one of the Scripture passages I read was Simeon's song in Luke 2. This dear sister in Christ was certainly ready to go. One wonders how many times she sang the Nunc Dimittis during her many, many years of faithful worship.
I wrote the following text in 1994 to the tune, THE ASH GROVE, as a versification of the Nunc Dimittis.
My heart is now thrilling
At Your Word's fulfilling,
O Lord, let Your servant depart in Your peace.
I see Your salvation
Prepared for each nation,
It shines with a radiance that never will cease:
A light that will brighten
Like dawn, to enlighten
Both Gentiles and Jews from each tribe and each race.
What sin was concealing
Your love is revealing--
The glory of Israel, the light of Your grace!