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IconChristintheStable2How shall I describe this Birth to you? For this wonder fills me with astonishment.

The Ancient of days has become an infant.

He who sits upon the sublime and heavenly throne
now lies in a manger.

And He who cannot be touched, who is simple, without complexity, and incorporeal,
now lies subject to the hands of men.

He who has broken the bonds of sinners,
is now bound by an infant’s bands.

But He has decreed that ignominy shall become honor,
infamy be clothed with glory,
and total humiliation the measure of His goodness.

For this He assumed my body, that I may become capable of His Word;
taking my flesh, He gives me His spirit;
and so He bestowing and I receiving,
He prepares for me the treasure of Life.
He takes my flesh, to sanctify me;
He gives me His Spirit, that He may save me.

Truly wondrous is the whole chronicle of the Nativity!

For this day the ancient slavery is ended,
the devil confounded,
the demons take to flight,
the power of death is broken,
paradise is unlocked,
the curse is taken away,
sin is removed from us,
error driven out,
truth has been brought back…

– John Chrysostom, 347-407 A.D.


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5 thoughts on “The Ancient of Days Has Become an Infant”

  1. You know it’s a mystery I don’t we’ll ever be able to fathom.
    How do you put all of God into a baby.
    How do you put one who speaks worlds into existence into an infant.
    But this is definitely one of the questions I plan to ask Jesus in the Kingdom to come.
    Another awesome post.
    God bless

  2. Christiane says:

    ‘every ancient, every new’

    (St. Augustine)

  3. Michael Snow says:

    Wonderful prayer. Here is a wonderful video of Spurgeon’s words on Immanuel (3 min)

  4. Simon says:

    Reformed take note of what Chrysostom is saying. He applies the benefits that Protestants normally associate with the atonement (defeat of the devil and conquering of death) to Christ’s birth. It’s Christ’s whole life that is salvific. Something that the Reformed don’t really take seriously. Hence they want to construct abstract theories from Paul and not look to closely at Christ’s life and teachings (which is why you get lunatics in evangelical circles like the Duck Dynasty guys). Also, no notion of penal substitution. Looking at Christ’s whole life as salvific necessarily downplays penal sub. Penal sub was not emphasised by the Fathers (I would say is completely absent from them – particularly the Eastern Fathers like Chrysostom).

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Trevin Wax

​Trevin Wax is Bible and Reference Publisher at LifeWay Christian Resources and managing editor of The Gospel Project. You can follow him on Twitter or receive blog posts via email. Click here for Trevin’s full bio.

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