“The King shall come”

The King shall come, when men have proved their worst,
Into the squalor of their ceaseless war
To prove God righteous, merciful, and just,
And lead from shame into a way of peace.

The King has come, announced by herald hosts,
And by his life, his sacrificial death,
And taking up his life again in might
Begun a kingdom that shall never end.

The King shall come when every knee has bent
And every foe surrendered to his rule,
Greeted with acclamation by his folk,
To sit down on his rightful throne on Earth.

I wrote this poem about this time last year, but at that time decided to postpone posting it here until this Advent, since I filled last Advent with my series on the O Antiphons. I tried to distill my understanding of the various subjects of the Advent season, which I meditated on in three prior posts in 2012, briefly into verse with some definite structure.

I earnestly welcome your comments, questions, critique, or other feedback about this or any other part of my work. If you’d like to read more of my poetry, you can read my archive (also organized in more manageable installments), follow this blog for (now only occasional) new poetry (among other things), or get my book, which contains over sixty of my best poems, each paired with a public-domain illustration or drawing. You may also share this poem with others, subject to my sharing policy.

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Advent Hymn: “Hark, what a sound”

This Advent, we’re looking at three Advent hymns. Today’s hymn is comparatively recent, but it’s one that I keep finding myself quoting; in fact, a few years ago, I had not remembered ever singing it, but a phrase from the last verse leaped into my mind and stayed there until I looked up which hymn it came from. Continue reading

“O come, O King”

O come, O King—Desire of nations, come—
And make of us your promised lasting home.
Purge with your fire each hint of dross away,
And kindle lights across your whole domain
Until no corner of this mortal sphere
Remains in darkness and resists your reign.
Take up your scepter, rule from pole to pole
In true and perfect, everlasting peace.
O, Maranatha!—King of Glory, come!

I had in mind to post a different poem that’s been sitting on my desk for some time—and then this wouldn’t leave me alone until I got it down. And it’s eminently suitable for a Friday in Advent. And I now regret that I used the title “Advent” for an earlier poem.

As always, I earnestly welcome your (further) comments, suggestions (perhaps of a real title for this poem?), questions, critique, or other feedback about this or any other part of my work. If you liked this, you can follow this blog, which includes one of my poems every Friday, or read other poems I’ve written here on my blog (perhaps starting with those linked from one of the “archive” installments, since the full archive is by now, at over two hundred poems, somewhat daunting). You may also share this poem with others, subject to my sharing policy.

This poem is also mirrored on my wiki.

“Coming in Glory”: The third side of Advent

But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens existed and the earth was formed out of water and by water. By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed. By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men.

Painting of the Last Judgment

But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar, the elements will be destroyed by fire, ad the earth and everything in it will be laid bare. … That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, the home of righteousness.

Lo! he comes with clouds descending,
Once for favored sinners slain;
Thousand thousand saints attending,
Swell the triumph of his train:
Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!
God appears on earth to reign.

Now redemption, long expected,
See in solemn pomp appear;
All His saints, by man rejected,
Now shall meet Him in the air:
Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!
See the day of God appear!

The past two weeks, we’ve looked at two sides of Advent, preparation for Christmas and reflection on the preparation of the world for the First Advent and God’s visiting his people in judgment throughout history. Today we come to the last “side” of the season: the “Second Coming” for which we wait. Continue reading