29 December 2015

What Child is This

What a radical concept that God would see our need for him to experience earth as we do, that he sent His One and ONLY son here that we would have someone who is "able to sympathize with our weaknesses" 

This time of year, we celebrate the birth of Jesus and I really want to communicate to you, maybe in a new, more able to grasp kind of way, the depth and weight of the significance of this event. The thing that came to mind today when I was thinking of the birth of Jesus was the song "What Child is This". 

What Child is This
What child is this, who, laid to rest,
On Mary's lap is sleeping?
Whom angels greet with anthems sweet,
While shepherds watch are keeping?
This, this is Christ the King,
Whom shepherds guard and angels sing:
Haste, haste to bring Him laud,
The babe, the son of Mary.

Why lies He in such mean estate,
Where ox and donkeys are feeding?
Good Christians, fear, for sinners here
The silent Word is pleading.
Nails, spears shall pierce him through,
the cross he bore for me, for you.
Hail, hail the Word made flesh,
the Babe, the Son of Mary.

So bring him incense, gold, and myrrh,
Come, peasant, king, to own him.
The King of kings salvation brings,
Let loving hearts enthrone him.
Raise, raise a song on high,
The virgin sings her lullaby
Joy, joy for Christ is born,
The babe, the Son of Mary.

This, this is Christ the King,
Whom shepherds guard and angels sing:
Haste, haste to bring Him laud,
The babe, the son of Mary.



After I read these lyrics, I noticed something. A very important section that I don't often hear sung...
Nails, spears shall pierce him through,
the cross he bore for me, for you.
Hail, hail the Word made flesh,
the Babe, the Son of Mary.

I don't know if I have just been missing this section the whole time, or if maybe it is omitted sometimes, but this is a VERY essential section to have missed. I mean it really is the main point of the song. That God came down, Word made flesh; innocent, pure, and lovely baby boy, to be nailed to a cross in order to pardon all people from their wrongdoing. 

Wikipedia via "Stories of the Great Christmas Carols" writes...
"The context of the carol centers around the Adoration of the Shepherds, who visited Jesus during his Nativity. The questions posed in the lyrics reflect what the shepherds were possibly pondering to themselves when they encountered him, with the rest of the carol providing a response to their questions." 


The book also mentions that the writer wrote the hymn after he fell ill and began to study scripture. The hymn urges people to turn to God and salvation. 


For this Christmas season, I leave you with this.

Isaiah 55 (NIV)
“Come, all you who are thirsty,
    come to the waters;
and you who have no money,
    come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
    without money and without cost.
Why spend money on what is not bread,
    and your labor on what does not satisfy?
Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good,
    and you will delight in the richest of fare.
Give ear and come to me;
    listen, that you may live.
I will make an everlasting covenant with you,
    my faithful love promised to David.
See, I have made him a witness to the peoples,
    a ruler and commander of the peoples.
Surely you will summon nations you know not,
    and nations you do not know will come running to you,
because of the Lord your God,
    the Holy One of Israel,
    for he has endowed you with splendor.”
Seek the Lord while he may be found;
    call on him while he is near.
Let the wicked forsake their ways
    and the unrighteous their thoughts.
Let them turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on them,
    and to our God, for he will freely pardon.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
    neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth,
    so are my ways higher than your ways
    and my thoughts than your thoughts.
As the rain and the snow
    come down from heaven,
and do not return to it
    without watering the earth
and making it bud and flourish,
    so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,
so is my word that goes out from my mouth:
    It will not return to me empty,
but will accomplish what I desire
    and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.
You will go out in joy
    and be led forth in peace;
the mountains and hills
    will burst into song before you,
and all the trees of the field
    will clap their hands.
Instead of the thornbush will grow the juniper,
    and instead of briers the myrtle will grow.
This will be for the Lord’s renown,
    for an everlasting sign,
    that will endure forever.”

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