Sing a Song… is a short series which looks at specific songs of the Bible and their Ah-ha Moments. This is the fourth installment.


It was Christmas and I was determined to have the best ever. Gifts under the tree for family and friends were carefully selected. I had an itinerary that included attending Christmas pageants, taking walks along cobblestoned streets in Winter Park, Florida, where the holiday can be so beautifully experienced, attending the Walk through Bethlehem display at a nearby church, and our church’s Christmas concert.


The latter was highly anticipated as our praise and worship team is bar-none and the church had promised a “walk through the trees” display sure to thrill us. I don’t actually remember any particular tree. What I do recall is that while sitting fourth-row-center in our large auditorium, I heard O Magnum Mysterium for the very first time.


Years of Silence
There are 400 “silent” years between the old and the new testaments of the Bible. “Silent” because there is no record of God speaking to His people or His prophets.


The world was not silent, however.   The world was in its most intensive search for “truth” as has ever been. It was a time of seeking the “meaning of life” in places like Greece and India. It was the era of thinkers, such as Aristotle, Plato, and Socrates. Of conquerors such as Alexander the Great and of religious men like Buddha.


It was also a time of Roman wars preceding what is known as Pax Romana, the peace of Rome.


Silence Broken
God had been silent long enough. He sent His angel Gabriel to announce that the long-awaited Messiah was coming. Not in the form of a philosopher, per se, or a military leader, or one who would bring about governmental peace by subjection of peoples.


God’s voice was heard for the first time in 400 years in the form of a newborn’s wail, heard by a poor Jewish carpenter, his young bride, and perhaps a few animals (the Bible gives us no clear facts on animals at the birthing place, though the insinuation is understandable).


O Magnum Mysterium


            O great mystery and wonderful sacrament

            That animals see the Lord born, lying in a manger.


            Blessed virgin whose womb was worthy to bear Lord Christ.