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The Powerful Message of Christmas Carols
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When I was growing up, it wasn’t unusual to have Christmas carolers come to our home and sing for our family. They would go from house-to-house sharing the good news of God’s Gift to mankind. I have happy memories of going caroling as a teenager as well. Singing about the Lord, encouraging others, and enjoying some hot chocolate on a chilly evening are all part of those memories.

Although I often see caroling in the Christmas movies on TV, I haven’t seen much in person these days. Is that true for you? I wonder if people don’t remember or know those beautiful songs anymore or if it’s just because going to door-to-door isn’t well received these days. Either way, Christmas carols have some mighty powerful lyrics and teaching them to our children is a wonderful way to share the gospel- even amongst our own family members. Let’s look at some of these gospel-rich lyrics.

Hark the Herald Angels Sing
1739, Charles Wesley, Public Domain

Peace on earth, and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled.
Joyful, all ye nations, rise,
Join the triumph of the skies;
With th' angelic host proclaim,
"Christ is born in Bethlehem."
Christ, by highest heaven adored:
Christ, the everlasting Lord;
Late in time behold him come,
Offspring of the favoured one.
Veiled in flesh, the Godhead see;
Hail, th'incarnate Deity:
Pleased, as man, with men to dwell,
Jesus, our Emmanuel!
Hail! the heaven-born
Prince of peace!
Hail! the Son of Righteousness!
Light and life to all he brings,
Risen with healing in his wings
Mild he lays his glory by,
Born that man no more may die:
Born to raise the son of earth,
Born to give them second birth.
Hark! the herald angels sing,
"Glory to the new-born King!"

Angels We Have Heard on High
1855, Public Domain

Shepherds, why this jubilee?
Why your joyous strains prolong?
What the gladsome tidings be
which inspire your heav'nly song?
Come to Bethlehem and see
Him whose birth the angels sing;
come, adore on bended knee
Christ the Lord, the new-born King.
Gloria, in excelsis Deo!
Gloria, in excelsis Deo
Good Christian Men, Rejoice!
14th Century, Public Domain

Good Christian friends, rejoice
with heart and soul and voice;
now ye hear of endless bliss:
Jesus Christ was born for this!
He has opened heaven's door,
and we are blest forevermore.
Christ was born for this!
Christ was born for this!
Good Christian friends, rejoice
with heart and soul and voice;
now ye need not fear the grave:
Jesus Christ was born to save!
Calls you one and calls you all
to gain his everlasting hall.
Christ was born to save!
Christ was born to save!

It Came Upon a Midnight Clear
1849, Edmund H. Sears

It came upon the midnight clear,
that glorious song of old,
from angels bending near the earth
to touch their harps of gold:
"Peace on the earth, good will to men,
from heaven's all-gracious King."
The world in solemn stillness lay,
to hear the angels sing.
And ye, beneath life's crushing load,
whose forms are bending low,
who toil along the climbing way
with painful steps and slow,
look now! for glad and golden hours
come swiftly on the wing.
O rest beside the weary road,
and hear the angels sing!
And my personal favorite…

Oh, Holy Night
1847, Placide Cappeau, Public Domain

O holy night! the stars are brightly shining;
It is the night of the dear Savior's birth.
Long lay the world in sin and error pining,
Till he appeared and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope - the weary world rejoices,
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn!
Fall on your knees!
O hear the angel voices!
O night divine, O night when Christ was born!
O night, O holy night, O night divine!
Led by the light of faith serenely beaming,
With glowing hearts by his cradle we stand.
So led by light of a star sweetly gleaming,
Here came the Wise Men from Orient land.
The King of kings lay thus in lowly manger,
In all our trials born to be our Friend.
He knows our need-- to our weakness is no stranger.
Behold your King, before him lowly bend!
Behold your King, before him lowly bend!
Truly he taught us to love one another;
His law is love and his gospel is peace.
Chains shall he break, for the slave is our brother,
And in his name all oppression shall cease.
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we;
Let all within us praise his holy name.
Christ is the Lord! O praise his name forever!
His pow'r and glory evermore proclaim!

Whether you are homeschooling through the Christmas holidays or taking a break, why not take a little bit of time to learn the history behind these beautiful carols, the Scripture they proclaim, and sing them together as a family. You will gain a new appreciation of the true meaning of Christmas and might take those carols to others, so they can enjoy that message as well. Merry Christmas!

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Sharon Fisher - Curriculum Specialist
HomeWorks by Precept


 

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