December 19: O Radix Jesse

Latin

O Radix Jesse, qui stas in signum populorum, super quem continebunt reges os suum, quem Gentes deprecabuntur: veni ad liberandum nos, jam noli tardare.

English

O Root of Jesse, Who stand for an ensign of the people, before Whom kings shall keep silence, and unto Whom the Gentiles shall make their supplication: come to deliver us, and tarry not.

Today’s O Antiphon refers to Christ as “Root of Jesse.” Recall Jesse, the father of David – the great king of Israel. The antiphon references Isaiah 52:13,15 and 53:2, “Behold, my servant shall prosper, he shall be exalted and lifted up, and shall be very high […]For he grew up before him like a young plant, and like a root out of dry ground.” Jesus Christ is the root of Jesse in two ways: first, because he is a descendant of David, son of Jesse; and second because he “rules over the house of Jacob forever, and his reign will be unending” (Luke 1:32-33).

Let us pray:

O God, who through the child-bearing of the holy Virgin
graciously revealed the radiance of your glory to the world,
grant, we pray,
that we may venerate with integrity of faith
the mystery of so wondrous an Incarnation
and always celebrate it with due reverence.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.1

(1) See: Roman Missal, Collect December 19.