A Favorite Christmas Hymn


Lo, how a Rose e’er blooming

From tender stem hath sprung!

Of Jesse’s lineage coming

As men of old have sung.

It came, a flower bright,

Amid the cold of winter

When half-gone was the night.


Isaiah ’twas foretold it,

The Rose I have in mind:

With Mary we behold it,

The virgin mother kind.

To show God’s love aright

She bore to men a Savior

When half-gone was the night.


A favorite Christmas hymn of mine may date back as far as the fifteenth century, though the earliest manuscript was found in St. Alban’s Carthusian monastery in Trier and was dated around 1580. The text combines the story of Christ’s birth with the prophecies in Isaiah about the “rose” from the “stem of Jesse.” Jesus chose to come into our world as an infant, tender, beautiful and perfect like a rose, to be born into a cold, wet, dangerous world in the dark of night. His humility lay in His fragility and trust in God to keep Him safe.

One thought on “A Favorite Christmas Hymn

  1. Thank you so much for this beautiful post and link. This is also one of my favorite Christmas Hymns, I’ve never heard it sung so beautifully!

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