As part of my 25 for 25 (25 devotionals leading up to 25 December), here is Day # 9:
For the next 7 days we’ll be looking at Psalms for our Christmas devotionals. One in every six psalms includes at least one prophecy of the Messiah. Today please read Palms 9-10.
““Blest Are the Innocents” is not a psalm. But Sylvia Dunstan obviously took cues from the laments that we find in the psalter, such as Psalms 9 and 10. (Taken together, these two psalms form an acrostic poem in which every second verse begins with a subsequent letter of the Hebrew alphabet.) These psalms protest the murder of the innocent, crying out to the God who hears the prayer of the afflicted, the Lord who takes note of the blood that has been spilt.” (see Article).
As we’ve talked about several times in this Christmas series the theme of suffering is integral to Christmas. We think of it as a happy time but why? Because Jesus coming to earth saves us from suffering! As I was writing yesterday’s devotional tying the suffering of Job to considering Jesus’ birth persecution (Day 8), I came across the event called “The Massacre of the Innocents” when Jesus was two years old.
We are saddened by events like “The Massacre of the Innocents” and yet reminded when we sing “Blest Are the Innocents,” that indeed, there is a blessing only Jesus can give. And the best way we can be comforted in the face of tragic events is to consider that we have a Messiah who knows that pain and will comfort us through it.