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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Jerusalem.....................

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Jerusalem, from "Milton" by William Blake (1757 - 1827).



And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England's mountains green?
And was the holy Lamb of God
On England's pleasant pastures seen?
And did the Countenance Divine
Shine forth upon our clouded hills?
And was Jerusalem builded here
Among these dark Satanic Mills?
Bring me my bow of burning gold!
Bring me my arrows of desire!
Bring me my spear! O clouds, unfold!
Bring me my chariot of fire!
I will not cease from mental fight,
Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand,
Till we have built Jerusalem
In England's green and pleasant land


Some believe this well loved hymn is too nationalistic. I put it here without apology. Some say it has nothing to do with God and so it is not really a hymn and so should not be played in church.
To me it is symbolic. There are legends that Joseph of Aramathea brought the young boy Jesus to England. That they stayed somewhere around Glastonbury. It could have happened during those years that are missing from the bible story of Jesus. Somewhere between the Roman times and King Arthur it is possible that Jesus graced our shores. Joseph was a tin merchant owning mines in England and would have been one reason that he would have gone there. Joseph was the one who was given charge of Jesus body after his death and so there was a relationship there before His death at Calvery.
Writings dated around A.D. 550 by Taliesin, the Prince-Bard Druid may suggest Jesus began an early teaching ministry: “Christ, the Word from the beginning, was from the beginning our teacher, and we never lost His teaching.” Though these words could imply something more spiritual than the earthbound boy Jesus imparting Knowledge to the Druids, Jesus Christ, nevertheless, had a profound impact on the future of Druidism. Druids also believed in a Trinity.
After the death of Jesus Joseph and his group settled on the Isle of Glastonbury and built huts to include a church for themselves, probably made of the same sort of material the indigenous people used— mud plastered over a framework of sticks woven with branches(called wattle). They preached and taught the local people the true faith and laid the foundation for what Saint Augustine found 500 years later. So it is to me that this beautiful hymn is not just "nationalistic" but has it's root in legend, if not fact. Something we can not at this time prove. Or disprove.
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3 comments:

Kathy A Delightsome Life said...

You never know - the important thing is those following Jesus did act upon his last words - to go and to tell the world! Wonderful poetry and wonderful picture!
God Bless,
Kathy

The French Hutch said...

I'm not familiar with this hymn but it is beautiful. Thank you for sharing this story and this so beautiful picture.

~Emily
The French Hutch

Tracey@Breathing English Air said...

The former, Scottish, vicar of the local church would not allow this hymn!