Friday, April 19, 2013

The Apostles Creed -- Conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary

For our 2013 Hymn of the Month we will be exploring the Apostles Creed
With each post we'll look at one of the statements in the creed,
consider its significance, and share an appropriate hymn. 

The Apostles Creed
I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth:
And in Jesus Christ His only Son, our Lord; who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried; He descended into hades; the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God, the Father Almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Christian church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.
Of all the statements of the Apostles Creed, perhaps this one is most mysterious -- that Jesus Christ was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary. When the angel appeared to Mary and told her of the things to come, her response was, How will this be, since I am a virgin? We can understand that question! But the answer is more difficult to comprehend: The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God (Luke 1:35). 

In Genesis 1:1-2 we read, In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And that's when God spoke, and brought life and order out of chaos. And through the Spirit of God, hovering over Mary, God brought life and order out of the world's chaos through his Son born of a human. We read in John 1:14 (Amplified version) The Word (Christ) became flesh (human, incarnate) and tabernacled (fixed His tent of flesh, lived awhile) among us...

And it is through this coming together of the holy and the human that we see the lengths to which God would go to redeem his children.  

My Son Farewell

My Son
A body I've prepared for You
in Mary
Jewish girl
betrothed to Joseph
Jewish carpenter.
You who have been with Me
from everlasting days
who with me made all things
including earth and man
and Mary
tonight become a creature vulnerable
baby most helpless.
The swirling cloud
takes you to her
through darkest night.
I send an angel army to protect
proclaim your birth.
You'll grow
and spend a few days' light
then darkest noon
and You'll return.
I'll have the dust of earth
virgin's fruit
at my right hand
Tonight I joy
that you delight to do my will
take God-sized step
to earth and womb
and tree.
My Son, Farewell.

I hear a baby's cry.

Poem by Joseph Bayly, from the book A Voice in the Wilderness, published in 2000 by Cook Communication Ministries. Used by permission of Mary Lou Bayly.

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