Now we’re to the song that those herald angels actually sung. Well, ok, they may not have actually “sung” in Luke 2, but they might as well have. “Angels We Have Heard on High,” while in Latin, contains the correct words of “Glory to God in the highest.” Though it existed earlier in France (no one seems to be quite sure when it was written), it made its way into English hymnody through the 1862 translation by James Chadwick. What’s interesting about this is that it is a Roman Catholic origin. Chadwick was an Irish immigrant to England who became Bishop of Newcastle. He took a popular French carol, changing it a little (a stanza seems to have been left out, but I’m not sure when or how that occurred), and made it into the song we love today. The tune, however, is Protestant, making this song a truly ecumenical creation. Edward S. Barnes was an organist who made his way from fancy Presbyterian and Episcopal churches in New York and Philadelphia to finally settling at 1st Pres. in Santa Monica, CA. He put “Angels” to the famous tune “Gloria” in 1937, giving us that great chorus. Continue reading
1 Corinthians 15:35-49
But someone will say, “How are the dead raised up? And with what body do they come?” Foolish one, what you sow is not made alive unless it dies. And what you sow, you do not sow that body that shall be, but mere grain—perhaps wheat or some other grain. But God gives it a body as He pleases, and to each seed its own body.
All flesh is not the same flesh, but there is one kind of flesh of men, another flesh of animals, another of fish, and another of birds. There are also celestial bodies and terrestrial bodies; but the glory of the celestial is one, and the glory of the terrestrial is another. There is one glory of the sun, another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for one star differs from another star in glory.
So also is the resurrection of the dead. The body is sown in corruption, it is raised in incorruption. It is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness, it is raised in power. It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. And so it is written, “The first man Adam became a living being.” The last Adam became a life-giving spirit.
However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural, and afterward the spiritual. The first man was of the earth, made of dust; the second Man is the Lord from heaven. As was the man of dust, so also are those who are made of dust; and as is the heavenly Man, so also are those who are heavenly. And as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly Man.
Well here I am again getting my holidays all mixed up. 1 Cor. 15 is certainly an Easter text, and I could give you all a noble-sounding reminder that as Christians we are free not to keep seasons, days, new moons, and the like, but really I’m just trying to finish my ongoing series on the book of First Corinthians. Still, it is not inappropriate to connect Christ’s birth with His resurrection, as each phase of ministry was connected to the other, and the resurrection does have a direct relationship to the incarnation. You see, Christ’s first birth was really a preliminary to his second, as He had come to triumph over death and secure regeneration for all believers, and this required resurrection Continue reading