Here are my completed Hymnals:

Presbyterian 1955 Hymnbook: http://amzn.to/2zSRdpL

Episcopal 1940 Hymnal: http://amzn.to/2DEOl1H 

Broadman 1940 Hymnal:  http://amzn.to/2C1WuwK

Lutheran 1941 Hymnal:  http://amzn.to/2zUmYi2

Methodist 1939 Hymnal:  http://amzn.to/2CfJ1Wq

Pilgrim 1935 Hymnal: http://amzn.to/2DDvbJC

Here are my new projects:

Choice Hymns of the Faith 1945 http://amzn.to/2Dx97nA

Now Sings My Soul, New Songs for the Lord by: Linda Bonney Olin:  http://amzn.to/2DQ6gUy

J S Bach Riemenschneider 371 Harmonized Chorales  http://amzn.to/2DSy5f9

References:

Dictionary of Hymnology:  http://amzn.to/2BxPabk

Once in Royal David’s City

Text by: Cecil Frances Alexander 1848

Tune: Irby by: Henry J Gauntlett 1849

YouTube link: https://youtu.be/Fpy0j_HUzQ4

1 Once in royal David’s city

Stood a lowly cattle shed,

Where a mother laid her Baby

In a manger for His bed:

Mary was that mother mild,

Jesus Christ her little Child.

2 He came down to earth from Heaven,

Who is God and Lord of all,

And His shelter was a stable,

And His cradle was a stall;

With the poor, and mean, and lowly,

Lived on earth our Savior holy.

3 And, through all His wondrous childhood,

He would honor and obey,

Love and watch the lowly maiden,

In whose gentle arms He lay:

Christian children all must be

Mild, obedient, good as He.

4 For He is our childhood’s pattern;

Day by day, like us He grew;

He was little, weak and helpless,

Tears and smiles like us He knew;

And He feeleth for our sadness,

And He shareth in our gladness.

5 And our eyes at last shall see Him,

Through His own redeeming love,

For that Child so dear and gentle

Is our Lord in Heav’n above,

And He leads His children on

To the place where He is gone.

6 Not in that poor lowly stable,

With the oxen standing by,

We shall see Him; but in Heaven,

Set at God’s right hand on high;

Where like stars His children crowned

All in white shall wait around.

This hymn began its life as a children’s hymn. The author, Cecil Alexander, who also wrote: “All Things Bright and Beautiful,” wrote a large number of songs for children. And as typical for that era, the text would be highly didactic, giving instruction in theology as well as what was considered proper behavior of children. These latter verses of the original poem (stanzas 3 & 4) are almost always left out in modern hymnals. When these middle stanzas are removed, what is left is a powerful and straight forward exposition of key Christian beliefs.

Within the first stanza we have the identity of the birth place, Bethlehem, as King David’s royal city. This reaches centuries back in time to Israel’s early days and the ascension of King David. And within this royal city is a cattle shed. Some of us of had the, um, pleasure of visiting a barn full of cattle; it is hardly the place one would expect the Son of God to be born in. Yet, what is foolishness to man is wisdom to God. Jesus, the Son of the Living God, whose own birth was more humble and crude than any of ours, chose to surrender His throne to redeem us, his lost flock.

The God of Abraham, Isaac, and David, came from Heaven and chose to live amongst us as flesh and blood. He chose a stable for his shelter and a feeding trough as his cradle.

Yet, this is just part of the fulfillment of His promise. In time we will see Him at last. Through the redemption which will come from this child, He will lead us home. Not to this poor, odorous stable, but in the glory of Heaven.

Micah 5:2-4

2 But you, O Bethlehem Eph′rathah,
who are little to be among the clans of Judah,
from you shall come forth for me
one who is to be ruler in Israel,
whose origin is from of old,
from ancient days.
Therefore he shall give them up until the time
when she who is in travail has brought forth;
then the rest of his brethren shall return
to the people of Israel.
And he shall stand and feed his flock in the strength of the Lord,
in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God.
And they shall dwell secure, for now he shall be great
to the ends of the earth.

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