Advent Devotional/Playlist · Hymn Devotionals

(Day 7) What Child is This?

What Child is This is another English carol, written in 1856 by William Chatterton Dix.

I find some of the most profound words in the song to be, “Good Christians, fear, for sinners here; the silent Word is pleading.” I wondered what that meant, until I remembered that in some versions this is directly followed by, “Nails, spear shall pierce him through; the cross he’ll bear for me, for you.” The Christ child came to us in order to accomplish a great work – that of atonement for our sins. And in his life, death, and resurrected life, he intercedes for his own – he pleads for us poor sinners. What an amazing thing. We must always remember that God is for us, not because of anything we’ve done to deserve his favor, but because we have a perfect High Priest who intercedes on our behalf. Let us bow in fearful adoration with the shepherds; let our hearts joyfully enthrone the King of Kings!

Scriptures to ponder:

 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died – more than that, who was raised – who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. Romans 8:31-34

Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them. For it was indeed fitting that we should have such a high priest, holy, innocent, and exalted above the heavens. He has no need, like those high priests, to offers sacrifices daily, first for his own sins and then for those of the people, since he did this once for all when he offered up himself. Hebrews 7:25-27

What Child is this who, laid to rest
On Mary’s lap is sleeping,
Whom angels greet with anthems sweet,
While shepherds watch are keeping?
This, this is Christ the King,
Whom shepherds guard and angels sing;
Haste, haste to bring Him laud,
The Babe, the Son of Mary.

Why lies He in such mean estate,
Where ox and ass are feeding?
Good Christians, fear, for sinners here
The silent Word is pleading.
This, this is Christ the King,
Whom shepherds guard and angels sing;
Haste, haste to bring Him laud,
The Babe, the Son of Mary.

So bring Him incense, gold and myrrh,
Come peasant, king to own Him;
The King of kings salvation brings,
Let loving hearts enthrone Him.
This, this is Christ the King,
Whom shepherds guard and angels sing;
Haste, haste to bring Him laud,
The Babe, the Son of Mary.

Raise, raise a song on high,
The Virgin sings her lullaby.
Joy, joy for Christ is born,
The Babe, the Son of Mary.

Nails and spears shall pierce Him through
The cross He bore for me, for you
So hail, hail the Word made flesh
The babe, the Son of Mary

(full playlist)

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