Singing from Advent to Epiphany

Christmas Carols - Part 3


Luke 2:14, It Came upon the Midnight Clear
Psalm 42:1-6a; Psalm 121, I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day (vs. 4)
John 1:1-5, 14, O Come, All Ye Faithful (vs. 3)
Psalm 119:174-176, God Rest You Merry, Gentlemen
John 11:21-27, 34-44, Good Christian Men, Rejoice (vs. 3)


More Songs for Advent through Epiphany

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Luke 2:14, It Came upon the Midnight Clear (12/17/2009)

Have you seen this bumper sticker? It's pertinent to today's Christmas carol, and it's an accurate commentary on today's scripture. We all learned in Sunday School and in Christmas carols and cards that the angels said, "Peace on earth, good will to men," that is, to all people. But it turns out that the best and oldest manuscripts (not available to early translators) have something slightly different: "Peace on earth to men who have [God's] good will." The sad fact is that even Christmas doesn't bring peace and good will to all. Peace comes only to those who have God's good will through knowing God. I don't normally recommend bumper-sticker theology, but this particular one is correct. Psalm 42:1-6a; Psalm 121, I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day (vs. 4) (12/21/2009)

One thing wrong with "Happy Holidays!" is that not everyone is happy during the holidays. If you are sick in body, mind, or soul; if you have lost a loved one recently; if you are helpless, homeless, or hungry, then it may be impossible for you to feel happy. That's okay. God's shoulders are big enough to take on our sorrow. John 1:1-5, 14, O Come, All Ye Faithful (vs. 3) (12/23/2009)

The incarnation is one of the two or three greatest mysteries of the Christian faith. Remember that "mystery" does not, biblically speaking, mean "a problem to be solved." Instead, it means "a secret," which can only be revealed. God spoke the universe into existence, and later that word became a person. How? It's a mystery. Psalm 119:174-176, God Rest You Merry, Gentlemen (12/24/2009)

The best of the Christmas carols contain the entire gospel message. Today's carol hearkens back to the ancient image of God's people as a flock of sheep, prone to go astray and wander into the paths of Satan. What comfort and joy to know that Jesus Christ was born to come after us! John 11:21-27, 34-44, Good Christian Men, Rejoice (vs. 3) (Christmas Day, 12/25/2009)

To "evangelize" people is to tell them good news. "Evangel" means "good news." Any Christmas carol I happen to be listening to tends to be my favorite, but today's carol may be my favorite favorite. It's got a great tune and a cheerful tempo, and the words contain almost the entire gospel, which, by the way, also means "good news." I especially like the last verse, which is the good news that Jesus brought to Martha and Mary.
More Songs for Advent through Epiphany
Advent Psalms
Christmas Carols - Part 1
Christmas Carols - Part 2
Hanukkah Songs
Epiphany Hymns

Copyright 2009, 2011 by Regina L. Hunter. All rights reserved. This page has been prepared for the web site by RPB.

Opinions expressed on this page are solely those of the author, Regina Hunter, and may or may not be shared by the sponsors or the Bible-study participants.  Thanks to the Holy Spirit for any useful ideas presented here, and thanks to all the readers for their support and enthusiasm.  All errors are, of course, the sole responsibility of the author.

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