Advent Calendar | Dec. 24

1 Day Until Christmas

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SCRIPTURE

bible

“Make a joyful noise to God, all the earth; break forth into joyous song and sing praises. Sing praises to God with the lyre, with the lyre and the sound of melody. With trumpets and the sound of the horn make a joyful noise before the Ruler, God. Let the sea roar, and all that fills it; the world and those who live in it. Let the floods clap their hands; let the hills sing together for joy at the presence of God…” (Psalm 98:4-9a)
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JOY TO THE WORLD

LYRICS

angels-singing-1Joy to the world, the Lord is come!
Let Earth receive her King.
Let every heart prepare Him room,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven, and Heaven, and nature sing.

Joy to the world, the Savior reigns!
Let men their songs employ,
While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat, repeat, the sounding joy.

No more let sins and sorrows grow,
Nor thorns infest the ground.
He comes to make His blessings flow
Far as the curse is found,
Far as the curse is found,
Far as, far as, the curse is found.

He rules the world with truth and grace,
And makes the nations prove
The glories of His righteousness,
And wonders of His love,
And wonders of His love,
And wonders, wonders, of His love.

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ABOUT THE CAROL

The author of “Joy to the World,” Isaac Watts, wrote some 750 songs and is commonly called “The Father of Hymns.” A few of his most well-known songs still sung include “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross” and “At the Cross.”

For more than 100 years, congregational singing had been strictly limited to the Psalms of the Old Testament in poetic form. When Watts was a young man, the Church of England was just beginning to allow hymns other than the Psalms.

“Joy to the World” was published in 1719 as part of Watts’ “Psalms of David Imitated,” which contained paraphrases of many of the Psalms in New Testament language. This song is based on Psalm 98. Watts transformed the Jewish psalm of praise for some historic deliverance into a Christian song of rejoicing for the second coming of Christ.

The song originally was not about Christmas. Experts have had difficulty pinpointing when the song became associated with Christmas, but the lyrics and joyful mood of the song clearly can be applied to the birth of the Jesus in Bethlehem.

In 1839, more than 100 years after Watts wrote the lyrics, Lowell Mason adapted and arranged this song into a melody many believe to have been written by Handel as part of his “Messiah.”

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holly

praying-hands-columnPRAYER

My joy at your presence overwhelms me, God. May I receive you in my heart. Amen.
holly

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