O Come, O Come Emmanuel

A beautiful Advent carol has been running in my head, so I decided to explore it a bit. Advent is all about the coming of Messiah – first as a baby, then as King. Emmanuel – means ‘God with us’. We are cradled in between – Advent is a reminder that Jesus became a man to redeem us from our sin – and it is a reminder that He will come back in triumph to rightfully rule as King. He is our Joy! Rejoice!!!

O come, O come, Emmanuel is a translation of the Catholic Christian Latin text (“Veni, veni, Emmanuel”) by John Mason Neale in the mid-19th century. It is a metrical version of a collation of various Advent Antiphons (the acrostic O Antiphons), which now serves as a popular Advent and Christmas hymn. Its origins are unclear, it is thought that the antiphons are from at least the 8th Century, but “Veni, veni Emmanuel” may well be 12th Century in origin. The text is based on the biblical prophecy from Isaiah 7:14 that states that God will give Israel a sign that will be called Immanuel (Lit.:God with us). Matthew 1:23 states fulfillment of this prophecy in the birth of Jesus of Nazareth.

O come, O come, Emmanuel
And ransom captive Israel
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Rod of Jesse, free
Thine own from Satan’s tyranny
From depths of Hell Thy people save
And give them victory o’er the grave
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Day-Spring, come and cheer
Our spirits by Thine advent here
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night
And death’s dark shadows put to flight.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Key of David, come,
And open wide our heavenly home;
Make safe the way that leads on high,
And close the path to misery.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, O come, Thou Lord of might,
Who to Thy tribes, on Sinai’s height,
In ancient times did’st give the Law,
In cloud, and majesty and awe.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.