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Ancient Words: Christmas Carols of Light

December 4, 2021 at 12:00 a.m.

I shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not nigh: there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel, and shall smite the corners of Moab, and destroy all the children of Sheth. (Num 24:17 KJV-BRG)

But there won't be any more sadness for those who were suffering. In the past the LORD brought shame on the land of Zebulun. He also brought shame on the land of Naphtali. But in days to come he will honor Galilee, where people from other nations live. He will honor the land along the Mediterranean Sea. And he will honor the territory east of the Jordan River. The people who are now living in darkness will see a great light. They are now living in a very dark land. But a light will shine on them. (Isa 9:1-2 NIrV)

The story behind the song of 3 Kings and the Star is this:: "We Three Kings", also known as "We Three Kings of Orient Are" or "The Quest of the Magi", is a Christmas carol that was written by John Henry Hopkins, Jr. in 1857. It glorifies the God-man, Jesus and honors the sacrifice that the Magi gave to worship Him. John Hopkins Jr's We Three Kings is a time-honored classic. It is always biblical and calls us to glorify and worship Jesus as the Star and True Light of the world! The three gifts are prophetic in gold for a King, frankincense for a Priest, and myrrh for a Prophet---and so he is crowned Prophet, Priest and King by the noble kings of the earth.

We three kings of Orient are

Bearing gifts we traverse afar

Field and fountain, moor and mountain

Following yonder star

O Star of wonder, star of night

Star with royal beauty bright

Westward leading, still proceeding

Guide us to thy Perfect Light

Born a King on Bethlehem's plain

Gold I bring to crown Him again

King forever, ceasing never

Over us all to reign

O Star of wonder, star of night

Star with royal beauty bright

Westward leading, still proceeding

Guide us to Thy perfect light

Frankincense to offer have I

Incense owns a Deity nigh

Prayer and praising, all men raising

Worship Him, God most high

O Star of wonder, star of night

Star with royal beauty bright

Westward leading, still proceeding

Guide us to Thy perfect light

Myrrh is mine, its bitter perfume

Breathes of life of gathering gloom

Sorrowing, sighing, bleeding, dying

Sealed in the stone-cold tomb

O Star of wonder, star of night

Star with royal beauty bright

Westward leading, still proceeding

Guide us to Thy perfect light

Glorious now behold Him arise

King and God and Sacrifice

Alleluia, Alleluia

Earth to heav'n replies

O Star of wonder, star of night

Star with royal beauty bright

Westward leading, still proceeding

Guide us to Thy perfect light.

"The First Noel" originated in its current form from Cornwall, England, first appearing in William Sandys' 1823 songbook Carols Ancient and Modern.

Englishmen William B. Sandys and Davies Gilbert collaborated to write additional words and set them to music in the 1800s, and Sandys published the resulting song as 'The First Noel' in his book Christmas Carols Ancient and Modern, which he published in 1823.

The first Noel, the angel did say,

Was to certain poor shepherds in fields as they lay;

In fields where they lay keeping their sheep,

On a cold winter's night that was so deep.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel,

Born is the King of Israel.

They looked up and saw a star

Shining in the East, beyond them far;

And to the earth it gave great light,

And so it continued both day and night.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel,

Born is the King of Israel.

And by the light of that same star,

Three wise men came from country far;

To seek for a King was their intent,

And to follow the star wherever it went.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel,

Born is the King of Israel.

This star drew night to the northwest,

O'er Bethlehem it took its rest;

And there it did both stop and stay,

Right over the place where Jesus lay.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel,

Born is the King of Israel.

Then entered in those wise men three,

Full reverently upon their knee;

And offered there in his presence,

Their gold, and myrrh, and frankincense.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel,

Born is the King of Israel.

"I am the light of the world." (John 8.12)-----Merry Christmas!!

Scott and Jane Johnson minister with East Faulkner Church of Christ and BRG Bible. Bible questions can be sent to [email protected]

Print Headline: Ancient Words: Christmas Carols of Light

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