The libretto of Messiah is taken from numerous books of the Bible: Job, Psalms, Isaiah, Lamentations, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi, Matthew, Luke, John, Romans, 1 Corinthians, Colossians, 1 Timothy, Hebrews and Revelation. If you’re not familiar with the passages selected by Jennens, you can read them at the above link.
The first five verses of Isaiah 40 includes the first passage sung in Messiah. In “Comfort Ye My People,” I included a video of the aria from the first four verses. The video below is Isaiah 40:5.
1“Comfort ye, comfort ye my people,” saith your God. 2 “Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned: for she hath received of the LORD’s hand double for all her sins.”
3 The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, “Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. 4 Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain: 5 And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.”Isaiah 40:1–5 KJV
“So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth;It will not return to Me empty,Without accomplishing what I desire,And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.”Isaiah 55:11
Libretto: Old and New Testament Passages selected by Charles Jennens
Oratorio: George Frideric Handel
Antony Walker conducting the Orchestra of the Antipodes and Cantillation.
Christmas Candle Stars: ChristianPhotos.net – Free High Resolution Photos for Christian Publications: cropped with “Messiah” wording added.
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