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Augustine of Hippo on the Nativity

December 26, 2014

From Faith and Life, here is another excerpt from St. Augustine, this one being on the Nativity.

The Birthday of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, whereon ” Truth flourished out of the earth,” has in its yearly recurrence dawned upon us, to be this day celebrated. Let us rejoice and be glad in it! For what we gain from the condescension of One so exalted is known to the faith of Christians, though it be hidden from the hearts of the ungodly.

Exult, ye righteous; it is the Birthday of the Justifier. Exult, ye weak and sickly; it is the Birthday of the Saviour. Exult, ye captives; it is the Birthday of the Redeemer. Let all Christians exult; it is the Birthday of Christ.

He was lying in the manger, while He held the world in His grasp; He was both an Infant and the Word. He whom the heavens contain not, was borne on the bosom of one woman. She carried Him in whom we have our being; she gave suck to Him on whom we feed. O manifest weakness, O wondrous humiliation, wherein thus lay hidden the whole Godhead! That Mother, to whom His infancy was subject, He was ruling with His power; while He sucked her breast, He was feeding her with His truth. May He who did not abhor to assume our very beginnings, perfect His own gifts in us; and may He who for our sake willed to become the Son of Man, Himself make us to be sons of God.

–St. Augustine, Sermon clxxxiv.

Let us indeed exult, for it is the Birthday of Christ!

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