Sunday, December 27, 2015

On the Fourth Day of Christmas

On the Fourth Day of Christmas
My true love sent to me:
4 Calling Birds
3 French Hens
2 Turtle Doves
and a Partridge in a Pear Tree

Four Calling Birds represent the Four Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.   Each book has its own voice defining Jesus.  Here’s the beginning of each:

John -The Eternal Word

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend[a] it.

Matthew - The Genealogy of Jesus Christ

The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham: Abraham begot Isaac, Isaac begot Jacob, and Jacob begot Judah and his brothers. Judah begot Perez and Zerah by Tamar, Perez begot Hezron, and Hezron begot Ram. Ram begot Amminadab, Amminadab begot Nahshon, and Nahshon begot Salmon. Salmon begot Boaz by Rahab, Boaz begot Obed by Ruth, Obed begot Jesse, and Jesse begot David the king.

Mark - John the Baptist Prepares the Way

The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. As it is written in the Prophets:[a]

“Behold, I send My messenger before Your face,
Who will prepare Your way before You.”[b]
“The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
‘Prepare the way of the Lord;
Make His paths straight.’”[c]

John came baptizing in the wilderness and preaching a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins. Then all the land of Judea, and those from Jerusalem, went out to him and were all baptized by him in the Jordan River, confessing their sins.

Luke - Dedication to Theophilus anf John’s Birth

Inasmuch as many have taken in hand to set in order a narrative of those things which have been fulfilled among us, just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word delivered them to us,it seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write to you an orderly account, most excellent Theophilus, that you may know the certainty of those things in which you were instructed.

John’s Birth Announced to Zacharias

There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the division of Abijah. His wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and they were both well advanced in years.


Today we remember Simon the Myrrhbearer, Founder of Simonopetra, Monastery of Mount Athos.  In his honor, I’d like to share one of my favorite hymn, Agne Parthene,  


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