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We held the ‘Messiah Concert In The Classroom’

January 3, 2014

imageFew secular presentations can project and encapsulate the story of Jesus as well as Handel’s  The Messiah.  From the prophecies to the Nativity to the crucifixion to the resurrection and glorification of the Savior, this brilliant piece of work take you through the narrative of the Christ using only Biblical text.  Masterful.

Every year for the past five years, I have included it as part of my Bible Doctrines class.  We will take one or two musical pieces and play them in class while students look up the Bible passage and see the story unfold.

This year, right before exam time, we had a concert.  Let’s hear as much of The Messiah as possible in one sitting! Right at our desks!  Ties and tails and all of the pomp of a high-end musical presentation.  Messiah in the Classroom. 

Don’t worry, the school budget was not in danger.  The full orchestra and choir were there, of course, but on the screen, thanks to YouTube.  The students were each given a program of the musical scores to be played and of course refreshments were served.  I wear a black suit to class every day, but in order to add to the occasion, I asked if anyone had a bowtie I could wear.  K- brought me a beautiful clip-on bowtie … lime green in color.

What a day it was.  Our young men festooned in suitcoats and shiny shoes, our ladies gliding by in formal concert dresses, our foodstuffs served in a few crystal bowls and, yes, mostly plasticware … but at least most of it had a holly leaf design on the Tupperware lid. Cocoa, muffins, scones, and Twix bars…

We heard 45 minutes of the  Choir of King’s College in Cambridge taking us through Isaiah’s prophecies of the virgin birth and the future kingship of this coming Child.  We followed the calls of John the Baptist and the description of the Suffering Servant.  We listened to the Biblical narrative of the crucifixion and  the resurrection of the Christ, and of course, the Hallelujah Chorus.

We stood for the Hallelujah Chorus.

The majesty, even coming through the small speakers of my computer, was not lost on the students.  Not a pupil moved through the whole number – and He shall reign for ever and ever… King of Kings, Lord of Lords … more than once, I wiped away a tear.  Who could not be moved by this passage?  And I noticed that I was not the only one emotionally affected.

It was a day where no notes were taken.  There was no quiz.  I did not lecture at all.

It was probably the most powerful teaching day of the year so far.

Soli Deo Gloria

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