O Oriens (Daystar)

O Oriens (Daystar)

O come, thou Dayspring from on high, and cheer us by thy drawing nigh
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night, and death’s dark shadows put to flight.


“But for you who fear my name, the sun of righteousness shall rise with healing in its wings.”
– Malachi 4:2

“Because of the tender mercy of our God, whereby the sunrise shall visit us from on high to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death.”
– Luke 1:78-79


On the first day of creation, God said “Light, BE!”. With his voice alone, he splashed the entire spectrum of brilliant golden hues across the expanse, separated the luminous from the dark, creating day and night, and then, like a painter stepping back from the canvas to assess the first strokes of the brush, he smiled, nodded with approval, and called it good. On the fourth day of creation, after distinguishing sky from sea, and filling in the middle with plants and trees, he decided that there should be innumerable “lights in the expanse of the sky”. Over the cradle of creation he balanced two glowing and glossy globes, and parents have been putting shiny, spinning, sparkly things above their babies’ beds ever since.

Of all the elements in creation that man can enjoy, perhaps no thing is more astounding than the Sun itself. The center of our universe, the source of life on earth, the dictator of our daily order, and the governor of the seasons, the Sun is an awe-inspiring, impossibly gargantuan miracle in itself. Consider this. The Sun, at its core, reaches temperatures of 15 million°C. It is an almost perfect sphere that is 870,000 miles across, that is 330,000 times larger than Earth. This means that close to 1 million Earths could fit inside it. The Sun is the entire color spectrum mixed together; this is why it appears white to our eyes. The Sun’s energy is mind-blowing. It would take 100 trillion tons of dynamite detonated every second to match its output. What is astounding is that our Sun is a relatively small star compared to others. There is a star called Betelgeuse, located in the shoulder of Orion. This red supergiant has a radius of 950–1200 times the size of the Sun, and would engulf the orbit of Jupiter if placed in our Solar System. There are other stars that astrologists say would dwarf even Betelgeuse. The current prize for the largest known star goes to UY Scuti, with an estimated mass of 1,780 solar radii, basically 5 billion times that of the Sun.

And yet, compared to the gazillion-watt glory of Jesus Christ, even Betelgeuse and UY Scuti are mere marbles. Nothing in all creation can compare to the radiance or our Redeemer. Our heavenly Son’s love is a burning ardor that endures forever, the gravity of which is irresistible. His love is “better than life” and rightfully should eclipse all others. We know this because “God, who said ‘let light shine out of darkness,’ has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Cor. 4:6).

When deep darkness hovers, we must remember that the Lord is our light and our salvation, whom shall we fear? (Ps. 27:1). The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness shall never put it out (John 1:5). Current circumstances shift like the moons, and each eclipse shall pass. Our faith is based on the inextinguishable light of the gospel of the glory of Christ. Consider this message of hope that was given to God’s people by the poet-prophet whose name means “the Lord saves.”

Arise, shine; For your light has come! And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you. For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and deep darkness the people; but the Lord will arise over you, and His glory will be seen upon you. The Gentiles shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.
– Isaiah 60:1-3

Isaiah warned Judah of impending captivity at the hands of Babylon. But, in some of the greatest passages in the Old Testament, he also rhapsodized on an ultimate redemption and rescue that would be reminiscent of Israel’s deliverance from Egypt and symbolic of our salvation through Christ.

The sun will no more be your light by day, nor will the brightness of the moon shine on you; for the Lord will be your everlasting light, and your God will be your glory. Your sun will never set again, and your moon will wane no more; the Lord will be your everlasting light, and your days of sorrow will end.
– Isaiah 60:19-20

This same vision is captured by John in the penultimate chapter of the Bible.
I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there.
– Revelation 21:22-25

What a radiant vision, when we shall see Jesus, the Sun of Righteousness (Mal. 4:2) and the true light (John 1:9), shining in all His splendor. The dawning of this hope begins at Christmas. Into the darkest night streams forth the light of the world. The kings of the ancient world are drawn to the star, and the nations will walk by the brightness of his dawning. Let us, too, behold and adore this wonder of wonders. All of Love’s fire and eternity’s energy is now packed into the body of an infant. There he lay, the daystar fallen to our poor planet, to give light to those who sit in darkness and disperse the shadows of sin and death. This stable lamp now lit in Bethlehem will never burn out. It illuminates the farthest corners of the universe and the darkest places of our hearts. All hail the Sun of righteousness! Light and life to all He brings. He is risen with healing in His wings!


Father of light, thank you for sending your son to our world. Jesus, Son of righteousness, we praise you for the eternal dawn of hope that your incarnation brings us. You came to us in the darkest night to make us children of the light. Holy Spirit, heal our sin-born blindness and illuminate our hearts with your love and grace. Holy Trinity, bring us, we pray, into the eternal splendor of your shared radiance, that we may forever bask in the inextinguishable fire of your love. There, forever, we will offer up our ceaseless praise!

In Christ,
Ross Hauck, Music Director
Ross Hauck