Simeon (Gospel of Luke)

The prophet Simeon, also known as unfounded in view of the relevant text of Luke Simeon the old man, is a figure in the New Testament of the Bible. The name means " being heard " (Hebrew ).

New Testament findings

In the second chapter of Luke's Gospel ( Lk 2.25 to 35 EU) Simeon is described as a devout Israelite man waiting in Jerusalem to the coming of the Messiah (here the consolation of Israel called ). That he, as later legends and pictorial representations tell, was an old man, found in Luke's text no basis. Together with the prophetess Anna, he recognizes in the child Jesus at the Presentation in the Temple the promised Messiah. He takes him in his arms and praised him with the so-called " canticle of Simeon ". Simeon says that in the encounter with the little Jesus the request made to him word of the Holy Spirit had been fulfilled and he can now continue his life in peace. Then he blesses the family of Jesus and prophesying that Jesus is bringing many people in Israel to fall, but will help up others. For the people of Israel Jesus would be a sign that would be contradicted. Finally, Simeon of Mary predicts that it will prepare her son's fate great sorrow and pain.

Later legend training

Already in the early Christian period to more legends grew up around Simeon and soon he was venerated by the Church as a saint. There is evidence that Simeon alleged relics in the 6th century were brought to Constantinople Opel. From there they came in 1243 to Zadar in Dalmatia. Since then, the hl. Simeon patron saint of the Dalmatian city. He is also called as an advocate for the blessing of children.


Both the Catholic and the Orthodox Church celebrate February 3, as a memorial of the saint. The canticle of Simeon is since the 8th century part of the Roman Divine Office. It is sung daily at Compline. In the Byzantine Rite of the hymn is part of the Vesper.

Based on the figure of Simeon Johann Sebastian Bach composed the cantata I have enough ( BWV 82). In the cantata introductory bass aria says:

"I have enough, I have the Saviour, the hope of the righteous, put on my eager arms; I 've had enough! I've seen him, my faith has pressed Jesus to the heart; And now I wish, today with joy From hence to divorce. "


Rembrandt: St. Simeon in the Temple

Chancel of the church of St. Simon of Zadar ( 2006)

Reliquary of Simeon in Zadar, of the rear side