Tuesday, December 24, 2002

Blessed Christmas, all!
from St. Ephrem's 5th hymn on the Nativity


Behold, O Bethlehem!
David the King clothes himself in fine white linen.
The Lord of David
and Son of David hid His glory
in swaddling clothes.
His swaddling clothes gave
a robe of glory to human beings.
On this day our Lord exchanged
radiance for shame,
as the Humble One.
For Adam exchanged truth for evil
as a rebel.
The Gracious One took pity;
His upright deeds conquered those of the wicked one.

On the birth of the Son,
the emperor was enrolling
the people in the census,
so that they would be indebted to him.
To us the King came out
to cancel our debts,
and He wrote in His name another debt,
so that He would be indebted to us.

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