One characteristic of the Christmas season that I really enjoy is the music, and one of the classics is O Come O Come Emmanuel. Whenever I sing the chorus of this song, it has the sound of a long-awaited hope that is realized and claimed: Rejoice! rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.
As I think of this song, I think of three other sections of Scripture that contains the word “come.”
- Isaiah 1:18: Come now, and let us reason together,” Says the Lord, “Though your sins are like scarlet, They shall be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They shall be as wool.
- Matthew 11:28-30: Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.
- Revelation 22:17: The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.
Isaiah’s use of the word speaks of repentance of sin and regeneration (salvation); Jesus uses it in the sense of a relationship; and, in the Revelation it speaks of our final redemption.
The story of Christmas is the gift of Jesus. He came to earth, so you could come to God. Listen to the words of O Come O Come Emmanuel, and focus on the hope, the invitation and the sound of victory in the word come.