A Lyrical Retelling

What?  You’ve never heard of Andrew Peterson?  Well, it’s time I remedy that.

Andrew Peterson is my favorite musician for many reasons, not least of which is his Christmas album entitled Behold the Lamb of God.  In the following short interview, Peterson describes his album as “a lyrical retelling of the coming of Jesus into the world,” and that it is.  Listen to what Andrew Peterson has to say about his Behold the Lamb album and tour:

I was introduced to Andrew Peterson’s music early in college, and as soon as I heard the first song, I was hooked.  Peterson is a storyteller, a poet, and a theologian.  His songs are rich with meaning and biblical truth.  The music he performs is captivating, moving, thought-provoking, sometimes humorous, and always personal.  I’ve had the opportunity to see Peterson in concert several times and even to meet him pre-show once.  He really believes what he writes and sings, and his passion for Christ is evident in his music and his life.  I encourage you to check out any of his incredible albums at his website.

The most important album to experience during this Christmas season though is Behold the Lamb of God.  This has become a staple of my Advent and Christmas music selection, and here is why I love it:  it tells the whole Christmas story from beginning to end, from Passover and the Exodus to the kings of Israel to Jesus’s birth.  In fact, this album captures an important truth of Scripture that we sometimes miss at Christmastime, and that is that the story of Christ did not begin with the birth of Christ.

Album artwork from "Behold the Lamb of God"

Think about most of the Christmas music we listen to.  We hear the story of Jesus’s birth, of angels singing on high, of shepherds coming to worship, of Mary and Joseph’s journey to Bethlehem, and of kings bringing gifts to the Savior.  Yet the story started long before that starry night on which Jesus was born.  From the beginning of time, God has woven together the greatest story ever told and integrated mankind into the tale.  In the Old Testament, prophets foretold the coming King, and the people waited with longing for their Messiah.  Through gripping songs on the Behold the Lamb album like “Passover Us,” “Deliver Us,” and “Labor of Love,” listeners experience the yearning and tension of a chosen nation waiting for their King.  The culminating song is the album namesake, “Behold the Lamb of God,” and it is a powerful and celebratory anthem of the coming of the King.  I love this album because it is musically stunning and it helps me to prepare my heart to celebrate the coming of the Messiah at Christmas.

You can listen to Behold the Lamb of God online, but I encourage you to buy a copy of the album on iTunes or The Rabbit Room.  As you listen, let God remind you that His story began long ago and is not finished yet.  Consider the words of the prophet Isaiah (Isa. 9:6-7) who announced the coming of the King long before Christ’s birth:

For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the greatness of his government and peace
there will be no end.
He will reign on David’s throne
and over his kingdom,
establishing and upholding it
with justice and righteousness
from that time on and forever.
The zeal of the LORD Almighty
will accomplish this.

Isn’t it amazing and awesome to know that our loving Father who sent His Son to die for us began the story of salvation and redemption so long ago?  I am unendingly thankful for God’s gift, and I so appreciate authors and musicians like Andrew Peterson who remind us of the big picture, the whole tale, the greatest story ever told.

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