Saturday, December 22, 2018

Bonar: Blessed night

Saturday, December 22, 2018
    Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”
    —Luke 2:13-14 (NIV)

The Shepherds’ Plain

Blessed night, when first that plain
Echoed with the joyful strain,—
“Peace has come to earth again!”

Blessed hills, that heard the song
Of the glorious angel-throng,
Swelling all your slopes along.

Happy shepherds, on whose ear
Fell the tidings glad and dear,—
“God to man is drawing near.”

Happy, happy, Bethlehem,
Judah’s least but brightest gem,
Where the rod from Jesse’s stem.

Scion of a princely race,
Sprung in Heaven’s own perfect grace,
Yet in feeble lowliness.

This, the woman’s promised seed,
Abram’s mighty son indeed;
Succorer of earth’s great need.

This the victor in our war,
This the glory see afar,
This the light of Jacob’s star!

Happy Judah, rise and own
Him, the heir of David’s throne
David’s Lord, and David’s Son.

Let the dayspring from on high,
That arose in Judah’s sky,
Cover earth eternally.

Babe of Bethlehem, to Thee,
Infant of eternity,
Everlasting glory be!
    ... Horatius Bonar (1808-1889), Hymns of Faith and Hope, first series, New York: Robert Carter and Brothers, 1866, p. 240-245 (see the book)
    See also Luke 2:13-14; Isa. 40:9; 52:7; 61:1-2; Mic. 5:2; Luke 1:19; 8:1; Acts 13:32-33
Quiet time reflection:

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