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Five Favorite Christmas Carol Texts

There are a few of our Christmas carols that speak of wintertime or snow, as if Christ was born in the cold winter months of New England during a grand Nor'Eastah. But rather than view these terms with strict literalness, the poetic expressions of wintertime and snow collectively speak of the darkness of the days in which Christ entered humanity. The fulness of time had come indeed, but it was a time of spiritual darkness, after 400 years of God's revelatory silence, and much oppression from the Roman authorities. Into that "bleak mid-winter" Christ came.

The text I'd like to share with you today (#4 on my list of favorite Christmas carol texts) is "See Amid the Winter's Snow," written in 1858 by Edward Caswall, another hymn that uses the metaphor of winter. Into that time of darkness the Savior came in great humility. The Creator became creation; The Son of God became the Son of Man. This is humble, loving condescension by our Savior in order to provide salvation for us sinners. As you ponder the humility of Christ expressed in this hymn text, pray the final stanza for yourself.

See, amid the winter's snow,

born for us on earth below,

see the tender Lamb appears,

promised from eternal years.

Refrain:Hail, thou ever blessed morn!

Hail, redemption's happy dawn!

Sing through all Jerusalem,

"Christ is born in Bethlehem."

Lo, within a manger lies

He who built the starry skies;

He who, throned in height sublime,

sits amid the cherubim!


Say, ye holy shepherds, say,

what's your joyful news today?

Wherefore have ye left your sheep

on the lonely mountain steep?


"As we watched at dead of night,

Lo! we saw a wondrous light;

angels singing 'Peace on earth

'told us of the Savior's birth."


Sacred Infant, all divine,

what a tender love was Thine,

thus to come from highest bliss

down to such a world as this!


Teach, O teach us, Holy Child,

by Thy face so meek and mild,

teach us to resemble Thee,

in Thy sweet humility!



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