Summary: Jeremiah declared that Jesus would be a King, a righteous branch, and our righteousness. What do those titles mean to us and what is it about Jesus that would give us comfort and joy?

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What was the name of that song in the video?

“God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen”.

Did you notice the power the video gave to that song? That wasn’t done by chance. The carol “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” was meant to be a bold declaration of the strength we have in Christ.

When I hear the title of the song “God rest ye merry gentlemen” it almost sounds to me like it was saying we can go home after church to take a nap. In fact, some people (I’m told) don’t even wait that long – they just nod off right in church.

But that’s not what the song title originally meant.

“God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” is actually an “old English” phrase which means something entirely different. The title of the song isn’t about “resting.

In the language of that day “REST” meant “to make” and MERRY meant “mighty” or “powerful”. Thus, the title of this song actually meant “God MAKE You MIGHTY, Gentlemen.”


And you know, once you know that, the song makes a whole lot more sense:

“God make ye mighty, Gentlemen, let nothing you dismay”

Why? How is God going to make us MIGHTY?

And how is He going to make it so we don’t DISMAY???


“For Jesus Christ our Savior was born on Christmas Day.

To Save us all from Satan’s power ere we were gone astray

Oh, tidings of comfort and joy, oh tidings of comfort and joy.”

The Song is loudly and proudly declaring – Jesus is our strength.

Because of Him we have no need to dismay or fear.

Because of Him we’re saved from Satan’s power.

And Because of Him we have comfort… and joy.

Essentially, that’s what Jeremiah was prophesying in our text from this morning.

Our sermon series for this month is: Do you SEE what I see?” and it refers to the fact that prophets were known as “seers” because they “saw” things other mortals were not allowed to see.

And what Jeremiah saw, as a “seer”, was a nation in trouble.

He saw “lost sheep”.

“False shepherds”.

“People in need of salvation.”

The people of that day were dismayed. They were in fear.

Even if you went by the Old English terminology - there was "no rest"… and there were "no merry Gentlemen."

The shepherds of the people had failed.

The Kings and the priests and the prophets had turned their backs on God.

The nation had become easy prey for invading armies and they were always in danger.

It’s against that backdrop that God made a promise through this “seer” Jeremiah:

“The days are coming,” declares the LORD, “when I will raise up to David a righteous Branch, a King who will reign wisely and do what is just and right in the land. In his days Judah will be saved and Israel will live in safety. This is the name by which he will be called: The LORD Our Righteousness.” Jeremiah 23:5-6

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Dennis R Dotson

commented on Dec 21, 2015

Enjoyed the sermon but could find no references that backed up the definitions of 'rest' and 'merry' as 'make' and 'mighty'. Could you share that info, please.

Jeff Strite

commented on Dec 22, 2015

Dennis, I apologize for that omission. That has been corrected. You can find it in the sermon or you can copy and paste from here:

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