As part of our recent project on the Apostles Creed I wrote music to the hymn on Article III. “Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, Born of the Virgin Mary.” About half way through the process I realized that I was writing a song for advent and Christmas. great timing!
Here is Samuel Stone’s text from his collection of hymns on the Apostles Creed – “Lyra Fidelium – 12 Hymns on the 12 Articles of the Apostles Creed”
Meekly the Maiden pure believed
The great Archangel’s word,
And by the Holy Ghost conceived
The Saviour Christ the Lord.
The Word made flesh creation sees,
Its mighty God in Man :
Great mystery of mysteries
Since ever time began !
That we might gain a second birth
The Holy Son was given :
T’was God Himself came down to earth
To win us back to heaven.
Lord ! we believe with love and praise
This wondrous truth of Thee :
Thereby in all our troubled days
How strong henceforth are we !
So near art Thou, so strong are we,
For now, if we are Thine,
Our Brother in humanity,
Thou makest us divine !
We see with peace in times of fear
Serene Thy human Form ;
Thy human Voice with joy we hear,
Sweet-toned above the storm.
So dread we not the deathly strife,
Knowing that Thou hast died :
It can but bear us into life,
Since nearer to Thy side ! Amen.
Here is his collection of scripture verses that he gathered in preparation to write this hymn.
” Though He was rich, yet for our sakes He became poor.”
” The kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man.”
” He hath regarded the low estate of His handmaiden.”
” He bare our sins.”
” And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord.”
” The angel Gabriel was sent from God.”
” The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee.”
” Unto you is born a Saviour which is Christ the Lord.”
” The Word was made Flesh, and dwelt among us.”
” God was manifest in the flesh.”
” Great is the mystery of godliness.”
“The mystery which from the beginning of the world has been hid in God.”
That we might gain a second birth The Holy Son was given : T’was God Himself came down to earth
” God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.”
” God was in Christ reconciling the world unto Himself.”
” Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God.”
” As the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.”
” For we have not an High Priest that cannot be touched with a feeling of our infirmities: but was in all points tempted like as we are. . . . Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of Grace.”
” He took on Him the seed of Abraham: wherefore it behoved Him to be like unto His brethren, for in that He Himself suffered, being tempted, He is able to succour them that are tempted.”
” Who is he that condemneth ?”
” It is Christ that died.”
” To depart and to be with Christ, which is far better.”
” And they shall see His Face.”
Here is a summary of the scriptures verses written out in prose.
I believe that the Son of God, very God of very God, was made Man, taking on Him human nature of soul and body, and conjoining it with the Divine in the unity of His Person: that a woman named Mary did by the immediate operation of the Holy Ghost conceive Him within her womb, and in due time brought Him forth, continuing still as before a pure Virgin: and that so the Word was made flesh, being, without any original corruption, bom of a woman under the law, that He might deliver us from the guilt of sin.