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CHAPLAINS DEVOTIONAL

One of my all-time favorite Advent Hymns is O Come, O Come Emmanuel!  It is a song of longing with a haunting melody in a minor key that has been sung for over 1,000 years. 

The original Latin words of this hymn traces back to the 8th century when Monks would sing these words in the weeks leading up to the Feast of Christmas.

The full hymn is first found in a compilation of hymns published in Cologne, Germany in 1710, by a Jesuit monk.  That Latin text that was translated into English in 1861 by John Mason Neale. 

I believe these words are most appropriate for today.  Our world is still in need of Someone to come to bring Light: Light that cheers, Light that dispels darkness, and Light that gives hope.

For Christians, this hymn is a reminder that Emmanuel, a Hebrew word that means “God with us”, has come to this world.  We can rejoice because our Savior has come and has fulfilled every promise made about Him to provide Salvation for all who trust in Him.

But the Hymn is also a reminder that we live in expectation and hope that our Savior will come again.  Everything going on in this world is temporary.  We have a hope and a future that is, literally, out of this world!

I encourage you to take a few moments and read through these ancient, yet profoundly current words, especially from the last verse:

 

O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here,
Until the Son of God appear.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Rod of Jesse, free
Thine own from Satan's tyranny;
From depths of hell Thy people save,
And give them victory o'er the grave.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Dayspring, from on high,
And cheer us by Thy drawing nigh;
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night,
And death's dark shadows put to flight.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Key of David, come
And open wide our heav'nly home;
Make safe the way that leads on high,
And close the path to misery.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.
 

O come, Thou Wisdom from on high,
And order all things, far and nigh;
To us the path of knowledge show,
And cause us in her ways to go.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Desire of nations, bind
All peoples in one heart and mind;
Bid envy, strife and quarrels cease;
Fill the whole world with heaven’s peace.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

                        

Dr. Ron Crews, CH (COL) USA Retired

Endorsing Agent
Grace Churches International
rcrews@gracechurches.com

Georgia MOAA Chaplain

May the LORD fill our world with heaven’s peace!

Georgia Council of MOAA
Georgia Council of MOAA
Georgia Council of MOAA
Georgia Council of MOAA

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