That glorious spring

Daily Reading for May 12

By the grace of the Spirit, the glory of the servants of God emerged after the ascension of the eternal Lord. Concerning this, Solomon, son of David, a man most accomplished in poems, a ruler of nations, sang in spiritual enigmas and spoke these words:

“It shall be made known that the King of the angels, the Lord strong in his powers,

will come springing upon the mountain, and leaping upon the high uplands;

he will garland the hills and heights with his glory;

he will redeem the world, all earth’s inhabitants, by that glorious spring.”

The first leap was when he descended into a virgin, a maiden unblemished,

and there assumed human form, free from sins,

which came to be a comfort to all earth’s inhabitants.

The second spring was the birth of the Child when he was in the manger,

wrapped up in garments in the form of a baby, the Majesty of all majesties.

The third leap was the heavenly King’s bound when he,

the Father, the comforting Spirit, mounted upon the Cross.

The fourth spring was into the tomb, secure in the sepulcher,

when he quitted the tree.

The fifth leap was when he humiliated the gang of hell’s inhabitants in long torment

and enchained the king within, the malignant mouthpiece of the fiends, in fiery fetters,

where he still lies, fastened with shackles in prison, pinioned by his sins.

The sixth leap was the Holy One’s hope-giving move

when he ascended to the heavens into his home of old.

Then in that happy hour the throng of angels became enraptured with happy jubilation.

They witnessed heaven’s Majesty, the Sovereign of princes,

reach his home, the gleaming mansions.

The Prince’s flittings to and fro became thereafter a perpetual delight

to the blessed inhabitants of that city.

Thus here on earth God’s eternal Son sprang in leaps over the high hillsides, courageous across the mountains. So must we men spring in leaps in the thoughts of our heart from strength to strength and strive after glorious things, so that we may ascend by holy works to the highest heaven where there is joy and bliss and the virtuous company of God’s servants. It greatly behooves us that we should seek salvation with our heart.

From the Anglo-Saxon poem Christ 2, quoted in High King of Heaven: Aspects of Early English Spirituality by Benedicta Ward SLG (Mowbray, 1999).

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