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Sixth Hymn of Christmas: Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming

This entry is part 6 of 12 in the series

"12 Hymns of Christmas"

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Staying with the theme of German carols, “Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming” comes from the fifteenth century and was translated by a couple different people into English in 1894, 1875, and 1914. The hymn develops Isaiah’s prophesy concerning the “rose” from the “stem of Jesse ” (Isa. 11:1; 35:1-2).

The tune is a traditional German melody from the sixteenth century, arranged by composer Michael Praetorius in 1609.

Lo, how a rose e’er blooming
from tender stem hath sprung,
of Jesse’s lineage coming,
as men of old have sung.
It came, a flower bright,
amid the cold of winter,
when half-spent was the night.

Isaiah ’twas foretold it,
the rose I have in mind:
with Mary we behold it,
the virgin mother kind.
To show God’s love aright
she bore to men a Savior,
when half-spet was the night.

The shepherds heard the story,
proclaimed by angels bright,
how Christ, the Lord of glory,
was born on earth this night.
To Bethlehem they sped
and in the manger found Him,
as angel heralds said.

This flow’r, whose fragrance tender
with sweetness fills the air,
dispels with glorious splendor
the darkness ev’rywhere.
True man, yet very God;
from sin and death He saves us
and lightens ev’ry load.

O Savior, child of Mary,
who felt our human woe;
O Savior, King of glory,
who dost our weakness know,
bring us at last, we pray,
to the bright courts of heaven
and to Thy endless day.

Download this hymn.

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The Hymnbook and the Devotional Life

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Scott Aniol

About Scott Aniol

Scott Aniol is the founder and Executive Director of Religious Affections Ministries. He is Chair of the Worship Ministry Department at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, where he teaches courses in ministry, worship, hymnology, aesthetics, culture, and philosophy. He is the author of Worship in Song: A Biblical Approach to Music and Worship, Sound Worship: A Guide to Making Musical Choices in a Noisy World, and By the Waters of Babylon: Worship in a Post-Christian Culture, and speaks around the country in churches and conferences. He is an elder in his church in Fort Worth, TX where he resides with his wife and four children. Views posted here are his own and not necessarily those of his employer.

One Response to Sixth Hymn of Christmas: Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming

  1. Again, one of our favorite hymns as a family. Plus, it has a wonderful bass line to sing. A favorite rendition of mine, though it does not contain every stanza, is on the SMS Men’s choir Christmas CD from a while back.

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