Hodie nobis caelorum Rex de virgine nasci dignatus est,
ut hominem perditum ad regna caelestia revocaret,
gaudet exercitus angelorum,
quia salus eterna humano …
(Today the King of heaven deigned to be born for us of a virgin,
that he might call lost man back to the heavenly kingdom,
the host of angels rejoices,
because eternal salvation has appeared to the human race.)
(Northern Italian antiphonal illuminated manuscript with text of song above / 15th century )
Whoever lives in God does not look behind him, but forward.
Whoever is alive (whoever does not fall prey to deathly atrophy of his inner life)
does not look backward—
be it over the short span of his own life or the greater span of history–
to find a realization of his longing.
He looks forward,
toward the goal,
toward the destiny of humanity as it should be and as it shall be.
He who puts his hand to the plow looks forward.
He lives “now” in the future.
He who looks back and loses himself
in historical speculation and his own inner reveries is not fit for God’s kingdom.
Advent hope is certainty of faith that shows itself in action through mutual
responsibility for the whole of life.
The church of Christ is the fellowship of this hope.
It believes so unreservedly that it is convinced that the divine must conquer the demonic,
that love must conquer hate, that the all-embracing must conquer the isolated.
Certainty tolerates no limitation.
God embraces everything.
When we trust in him for the future, we trust for the present.
When we have faith in him, our faith holds true for everything that touches our lives.
When the Time Was Fulfilled
Plough Publishing House