Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming ~ Hymn 129

By: Alan Harvey

Posted: February 15, 2020

Category: Daily Devotional

Devotional Thoughts Based on the Glory to God Hymnal

Isaiah 11:1

A shoot shall come out from the stump of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots.

Years ago, my parents and I visited eastern Canada and spent some time in Montreal. We spent the greater part of one day at the Botanical Gardens, where they had a large and beautiful Rose Garden. Just thinking about it reminds me of the heady rose fragrance that perfumed the air as we strolled through that garden. Unfortunately, all we have are our memories, as all the photos were lost in a developing accident.

I am not a rose grower, but I do love roses and it is even better when they are as fragrant as they are beautiful. One of the first roses to capture my attention was Tropicana, a beautiful orange rose with a lovely scent. The Attache’ rose, a two shaded pink rose, is one rose that florists still carry that has its perfume. While I am not a rose grower, I have seen the stem that sticks out of a bag concealing the roots and when bought to be planted, it does not look very promising!

The hymn writer likens a rose blooming to the coming of Jesus. “Lo, how a rose e’er blooming from tender stem hath sprung. Of Jesse’s lineage coming by faithful prophets sung. It came a floweret bright, amid the cold of winter, when half-spent was the night.” This shoot/child would be related to Jesse and so a branch shall grow out of his roots. Prophets had told of the Messiah’s coming. “When half-spent was the night” refers to the time past the people of Israel have waited for the Messiah to come and their renewed anticipation of His coming soon.

Our Prayer this day comes from an old hymn, All Beautiful the March of Days.

 All beautiful the march of days, As seasons come and go;
The Hand that shaped the rose hath wrought The crystal of the snow;
Hath sent the hoary frost of heaven, The flowing waters sealed,
And laid a silent loveliness On hill and wood and field. 

O’er white expanses sparkling pure The radiant morns unfold.
The solemn splendors of the night Burn brighter through the cold;
Life mounts in every throbbing vein, Love deepens round the hearth,
And clearer sounds the angel hymn, “Good will to men on earth.” 

O Thou from whose unfathomed law The year in beauty flows,
Thyself that vision passing by In crystal and in rose,
Day unto day doth utter speech, And night to night proclaim,
In everlasting worlds of light, The wonders of Thy name.