Tuesday, December 14, 2021

Daily Devotion: I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day

Bible Reading:  Ephesians 2:1-17 

Key Verse: Verse 14 –For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us;”

Key Words: For he is our peace

The lyrics to this song come from the beloved American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.  Perhaps the bells were those of the Episcopal seminary that is still active next door to the poet's historic home in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Published in 1864, “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day” sprang directly out of the cataclysmic American Civil War.  So Longfellow mourns in the next-to-last stanza: “And in despair I bowed my head/’There is no peace on earth,’ I said,/For hate is strong and mocks the song/Of peace on earth, good will to men.’”

But the bells answered him: “Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:/’God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;’ ‘The wrong shall fail, the right prevail/With peace on earth, good will to men.’”

This is where most people believe the song ends.  But Longfellow wrote two more stanzas that are omitted from hymnals.  They tell of the battles then raging in the
American South:


Then from each black, accursed mouth
The cannon thundered in the South,
And with the sound the carols drowned
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

It was as if an earthquake rent
The hearth-stones of a continent,
And made forlorn the households born
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day

I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old, familiar carols play,
and wild and sweet the words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

What to do:
✞ When we go through the fiery trials of life, remember God is not dead nor asleep.  He knows what   you are going through.  Remember, everything in life “comes to pass.”

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