Christ was born for this

December 14, 2010

I wonder how many really good stories are passed down from generation to generation, until the name of the author disappears into the story.  I wonder how many songs are sung beyond the life, beyond the memory even, of those who originally penned the music.  I think it says something about a song or a story that transcends the life of the author/composer.

Such is the case of Good Christian Men Rejoice. An easily remembered melody, and lyrics that stick.  That’s the kind of writer I would like to be.  You don’t have to remember me, but I hope I say something that stick around long after I am gone.  (A brief side note, I hope I am not gone too soon.)

Good Christian men rejoice
With heart and soul and voice!
Give ye heed to what we say
News! News!
Jesus Christ is born today!
Ox and ass before Him bow
And He is in the manger now
Christ is born today!
Christ is born today!

Good Christian men, rejoice
With heart and soul and voice
Now ye hear of endless bliss
Joy! Joy!
Jesus Christ was born for this
He hath ope’d the heav’nly door
And man is blessed evermore
Christ was born for this
Christ was born for this

Good Christian men, rejoice
With heart and soul and voice
Now ye need not fear the grave:
Peace! Peace!
Jesus Christ was born to save
Calls you one and calls you all
To gain His everlasting hall
Christ was born to save
Christ was born to save

 

John Mason Neal translated this carol, from Latin, but no one seems to know who wrote the music or the original lyrics, which were in Latin.  Another age-old song, telling the ageless story of Grace, Salvation and Joy.  Christ was born to save.

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