Monday, 24 December 2012

The Glory of the Incarnation


Every sabbath, and every Christmas season in particular, songs ring out around the world.  A King was born, the divine being, taking on human nature, human flesh.  The world would never be the same.  Do you hear the people sing, singing the songs, not of angry men, but of humble, pure joy?  We do.  We hear them singing both modern hymns of praise and ancient ones. 
What gives them their power?  They tell us that there is a great love that has intervened in history, making itself known in terms that are startlingly, and inexhaustible, palpable to us as human beings.  They are tales of love, lovingly enacted once, and afterward cherished and retold--by the grace of God, certainly, because they are, after all, the narrative of an obscure life in a minor province.  Caesar Augustus was also said to be divine, and there aren't any songs about him. [Marilynne Robinson, When I Was a Child I Read Books (New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2012), p. 127.]

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