John's 'Christmas Card' is a mash-up of Halloween horror with godly pyrotechnics. A 'silent night' also brings about war in heaven! Join me for a few minutes with Revelation 12 and what Christmas Revelation-style means for our church today.
Music: 'This Little Babe' from 'A Ceremony of Carols' by Benjamin Britten. The lyrics are from sixteenth century poet Robert Southwell. A children's choir and harp are the perfect setting for God's ambush of Satan through the incarnation. I sang this in a boys' choir many years ago, and it is devilishly (lol) difficult.
This little Babe so few days old
is come to rifle Satan's fold;
all hell doth at his presence quake
though he himself for cold do shake;
for in this weak unarmèd wise
the gates of hell he will surprise.
With tears he fights and wins the field,
his naked breast stands for a shield;
his battering shot are babish cries,
his arrows looks of weeping eyes,
his martial ensigns Cold and Need
and feeble Flesh his warrior's steed.
His camp is pitchèd in a stall,
his bulwark but a broken wall;
the crib his trench, haystacks his stakes;
of shepherds he his muster makes;
and thus, as sure his foe to wound,
the angels' trump alarum sound.
My soul, with Christ join thou in fight,
stick to the tents that he hath pight.
Within his crib is surest ward,
this little Babe will be thy guard.
If thou wilt foil thy foes with joy,
then flit not from this heavenly Boy.
'Let It Be So' - Southeast EngineThis is a band that started in my hometown of Dayton, OH. It's too bad that they're no longer around - this album 'Wheel within a Wheel' is fantastic, and closes with this song, which contrasts a relationship with God with something approaching the horrible beasts of Daniel and Revelation. Recognizing the beauty of Christ against the technological terror of the beast is one way to stay faithful in the face of hardship and persecution.