This Christmas hymn is new to me! My husband grew up singing it, but honestly I had never heard of it until I was researching for this Advent series. The words are nothing short of powerful! We hit on Jesus being “begotten” of the Father in yesterday’s post. Dictionary.com defines “begotten” as a participle of “beget.” The definition of “beget” is “to procreate or generate offspring.” This word has so much more to it than meets the eye.
The English word leads one to believe that anything that was “begotten” had a start or was created. Jesus did become man at a point in time (John 1:14). However, His “becoming” was unique in the fact that He had already been. My pastor/husband says that for every English word there are at least 2 Greek words. I love studying the original language of the Bible because there just aren’t enough English words to do the Greek language justice. The Greek word translated “begotten” is actually “only begotten” monogenes and has a unique meaning beyond our English word.
The word actually means “only, unique, one of a kind, one and only.”
Jesus was born, but His birth was not His beginning! There seems to be a belief in the world today that Jesus was nothing more than a good person, someone who made all the right choices in His life, and therefore we need to be and do more like He was and did. My friend, there is nothing further from the truth. Jesus is the only, unique, one of a kind, Son of God. Jesus, the One and Only IS God and we cannot be like Him no matter how hard we try because we will always eventually fall short (see Romans 3:23). All we can do is come to Him, admitting what we’re NOT, and let HIM be who He IS in and through us. Behavior modification will only get us so far. What we need (and what this world needs) is grace transformation which is Jesus being Jesus in us.
Of the Father’s love begotten ere the worlds began to be, He is Alpha and Omega, He the Source, the Ending He, of the things that are, that have been, and that future years shall see, evermore and evermore!Verse 1 “Of the Father’s Love Begotten”
Jesus is not only the unique, one of a kind begotten Son of God, He is our Source and our End. I am reminded of the verse that says, “For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen” (Romans 11:36 NASB1995).
Jesus is life. “In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it” (John 1:4 NASB1995). Roy Hession has an amazing quote in his book We Would See Jesus. He says, “in finding Him, men have not only found the way but the end too. We do not have to go beyond Him to something else to satisfy our needs. He is the end of all that we need, and the simple easily accessible way to that end.”
The rest of the lyrics of this Advent hymn are below in case you are not familiar with them. Take some time to reflect on these powerful truths written in the early fifth century. The love of God is expressed through His unique, one of a kind, only begotten Son.
O that birth forever blessed, when the Virgin, full of grace, by the Holy Ghost conceiving, bore the Savior of our race; and the Babe, the world’s Redeemer, first revealed his sacred face, evermore and evermore!
This is He whom heav’n-taught singers sang of old with one accord, whom the Scriptures of the prophets promised in their faithful word; now He shines, the long expected; let creation praise its Lord, evermore and evermore!
O ye heights of heav’n adore him; angel hosts, his praises sing: all dominions, bow before Him and extol our God and King; let no tongue on earth be silent, ev’ry voice in concert ring, evermore and evermore!
Christ, to Thee, with God the Father, and O Holy Ghost, to Thee, hymn and chant and high thanksgiving and unwearied praises be, honor, glory, and dominion and eternal victory, evermore and evermore!Verses 2-5 “Of the Father’s Love Begotten”
1. Read Colossians 1:12-20 and write down everything you learn about Jesus and the Father.
2. Read Colossians 1:21-23 and write down what you learn about yourself and your salvation.
4. The fact that Jesus is the unique, one of a kind, only begotten Son of God is relevant not just in our salvation, but also our sanctification! Whatever you are facing today, Jesus is the only one uniquely qualified to handle it. Whatever your burden, lay it down at the manger today and thank God for sending His only begotten Son.