Christmas Carols & Lyrics, Scripture and stories behind them

I’ve compiled a list of Christian Christmas Hymns with lyrics and some short background stories. The Scriptures behind some of them are very touching, so I have provided Bible references on most.  I wanted to do so much more, just not time, but Lord willing I’ll add to this over time. This is so YOU can check to see which ones you might like to use. There are a few secular ones included that are enjoyable.

Please understand, I am not recommending artists or songs, or any religious things they might teach, just providing information of hopefully sound lyrics, so please ‘prove all things’ (1 Thess 5:21Acts 17:11). I made the picture years back with the red violin and Handel’s Messiah sheet music overlaying the violin — however, it seems that the music isn’t showing up on the violin. 

I also am not suggesting someone cannot enjoy other songs about Christmas.

Is Christmas Pagan? Are we able to joyfully celebrate or not?

The Banning of Christmas Songs

Oliver Cromwell was one who was instrumental in banning many of the traditional Christmas songs in England. 

It is said that because of this (and I’m sure many others), that some of the oldest Christmas carols were lost and have not been recovered.

These are mostly traditional Christian Christmas songs, but some new ones that I felt were sweet such as this first song by Faith Hill and Harry Connick Jr.’s song below. On some you’ll find some background stories for your interest, including what Bible passages they may have been based on.

For anyone who would like to add a song, please provide lyrics and title, and I’ll research the Scriptures and consider adding it. Thanks to my friend Virginia for ‘Once in Royal David’s city’ which is a new addition.

Joy to the World

Written by Isaac Watts and based on the second half of Psalm 98. The original name was “The Messiah’s coming and Kingdom” and was more focused on the fact He has come, and looking to His second coming where He will reign on earth. This song was originally sung year round.

 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. Luke 2:10-11

More verses the song was reportedly composed by.

Luke 2:7; Eph 3:17-19; Ps 98:4-12; Ps 19:1; Rom 5:20; Gen 3:17-21; Ps 96:13; Ez 36:23; Ps 17:7

Joy to the world
The Lord has 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 Lord has 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 earth
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

Joy to the world
All the boys and girls
Joy to the people everywhere you see
Joy to you and me

Joy to the world
All the boys and girls
Joy to the people everywhere you see
Joy to you and me

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

Joy to the world
All the boys and girls
Joy to the people everywhere you see
Joy to you and me

Joy to the people everywhere you see
Joy to you and me

 

Mary, Did you Know?

 

by Mark Lowry, music by Buddy Greene (six years later)

If you search by this song and Bible verses, you will see articles calling this one of the most ‘biblically illiterate songs’.

I would beg to differ. Listen to it, and look up these Scriptures for your own joy. No song is perfect as they try to make words rhyme and they may not consider the thinking of another. I personally am touched as a mother thinking on the implications and what Mary wondered about in her heart or looking back at the cross. Not defending the writer or singer, just giving you Scriptures to consider.

 

 

Mary did you know that your baby boy will one day walk on water?

Mary did you know that your baby boy will save our sons and daughters?

Did you know that your baby boy has come to make you new?

This child that you’ve delivered, will soon deliver you

 

Mary did you know that your baby boy will give sight to a blind man?

Mary did you know that your baby boy will calm a storm with his hand?

Did you know that your baby boy has walked where angels trod?

And when you kiss your little baby, you have kissed the face of God

 

Mary did you know, Mary did you know, Mary did you know

The blind will see, the deaf will hear and the dead will live again

The lame will leap, the dumb will speak, the praises of the lamb

 

Mary did you know that your baby boy is Lord of all creation?

Mary did you know that your baby boy will one day rule the nations?

Did you know that your baby boy is heaven’s perfect Lamb?

This sleeping child you’re holding is the great I AM

Mary did you know, Mary did you know, Mary did you know…

 

I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day

Short Bio:  One Google search shared about the well known poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882) writing the poem “Christmas Bells” on December 25, although they said 1864.  Another site spoke of the number of devastating family circumstances he suffered the year before writing this Carol.  It shared that a couple of the stanzas are not in most hymnals, which spoke about the cannons thundering in the South, and hatred tearing apart the “hearthstones of a continent”.1  This was all news to me as I just was looking up the lyrics of the songs.

I Heard the Bells on Christmas day by Casting Crowns

What did Longfellow say when he was in despair and heard the Christmas bells?

“God’s not dead, nor doth He sleep.”

 
I heard the bells on Christmas day

Their old familiar carols play

And mild and sweet their songs repeat

Of peace on earth good will to men

 

And the bells are ringing (peace on earth)

Like a choir they’re singing (peace on earth)

In my heart I hear them (peace on earth)

Peace on earth, good will to men

 

And in despair I bowed my head

There is no peace on earth I said

For hate is strong and mocks the song

Of peace on earth, good will to men

 

But the bells are ringing (peace on earth)

Like a choir singing (peace on earth)

Does anybody hear them? (peace on earth)

Peace on earth, good will to men

 

Then rang the bells more loud and deep

God is not dead, nor does he sleep (peace on earth, peace on earth)

The wrong shall fail, the right prevail

With peace on earth, good will to men

Then ringing singing on its way

The world revolved from night to day

A voice, a chime, a chant sublime

Of peace on earth, good will to men

 

And the bells they’re ringing (peace on earth)

Like a choir they’re singing (peace on earth)

And with our hearts we’ll hear them (peace on earth)

Peace on earth, good will to men

Do you hear the bells they’re ringing? (peace on earth)

The life the angels singing (peace on earth)

Open up your heart and hear them (peace on earth)

Peace on earth, good will to men

Peace on earth, peace on earth

Peace on earth, Good will to men

 

Angels We Have Heard on High

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.  And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.  And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.  And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.  And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.  And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.  And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds. Luke 2:8-13

Angels we have heard on high
Sweetly singing o’er the plains
And the mountains in reply
Echoing their joyous strains

Angels we have heard on high
Sweetly, sweetly through the night
And the mountains in reply
Echoing their brief delight

Gloria, in excelsis Deo
Gloria, in excelsis Deo

Shepherds, why this jubilee?
Why your joyous strains prolong?
What the gladsome tidings be
Which inspire your heavenly song?

Gloria, in excelsis Deo
Gloria, in excelsis Deo

Come to Bethlehem and see
Him whose birth the angels sing,
Come, adore on bended knee,
Christ the Lord, the newborn King.

Gloria, in excelsis Deo
Gloria, in excelsis Deo

Yeah
Gloria, in excelsis Deo

Angels we have heard
Angels we have heard on high
Angels we have heard, oh
Angels we have heard on high
Angels we have heard on high
Angels we have heard on high

In excelsis Deo

 

Angels from the Realms of Glory

Written by Scottish poet James Montgomery

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:  “Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!” Luke 2:13:14

Angels from the realms of glory,

Wing your flight o’er all the earth;

Ye who sang creation’s story,

Now proclaim Messiah’s birth:

Come and worship,

Come and worship,

Worship Christ, the newborn King!

 

Shepherds, in the fields abiding,

Watching o’er your flocks by night,

God with man is now residing,

Yonder shines the infant Light;

Come and worship,

Come and worship,

Worship Christ, the newborn King!

 

Sages, leave your contemplations,

Brighter visions beam afar;

Seek the great desire of nations,

Ye have seen His natal star;

Come and worship,

Come and worship,

Worship Christ, the newborn King!

 

Saints before the altar bending,

Watching long in hope and fear,

Suddenly the Lord, descending,

In His temple shall appear:

Come and worship,

Come and worship,

Worship Christ, the newborn King!

Away In A Manger

And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. Luke 2:7

“Away in a Manger” was claimed to be by Martin Luther for quite some time, but now thought to be American in origin. It was first published in the late nineteenth century and has had multiple variants in the lines over the years. 

The interesting part is where the song says ‘no crib for His bed’. The manger was actually also called a crib, and in once place ‘stall’ in the OT usages of the name in the Septuagint. So a ‘crib’ was the manger that the animals ate their feed from.

Away in a manger

No crib for His bed

The little Lord Jesus

Lay down His sweet head

 

The stars in the sky

Look down where He lay

The little Lord Jesus

Asleep on the hay

 

The cattle are lowing

The poor Baby wakes

But little Lord Jesus

No crying He makes

 

I love Thee, Lord Jesus

Look down from the sky

And stay by my side

‘Til morning is nigh

 

Be near me, Lord Jesus

I ask Thee to stay

Close by me forever

And love me, I pray

 

Bless all the dear children

In Thy tender care

And take us to Heaven

To live with Thee there

A Baby Changes Everything

by Faith Hill

Teenage girl, much too young

Unprepared for what’s to come

A baby changes everything

Not a ring on her hand

All her dreams and all her plans

A baby changes everything

A baby changes everything

 

The man she loves she’s never touched

How will she keep his trust?

A baby changes everything

A baby changes everything

And she cries!

Ooh, she cries

Ooh, oh

 

She has to leave, go far away

Heaven knows she can’t stay

A baby changes everything

She can feel He’s coming soon

There’s no place, there’s no room

A baby changes everything

A baby changes everything

And she cries!

And she cries!

Oh, she cries gather ’round

(Up above the star shines down) star shines down

(A baby changes everything)

 

Choir of angels sing

Glory to the newborn King

A baby changes everything

A baby changes everything

Everything, everything, everything

Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah

 

My whole life has turned around

I was lost but now I’m found

A baby changes everything, yeah

A baby changes everything

A Boy is Born in Bethlehem

Do You Hear What I Hear?

Short Bio:  Originally written by Noël Regney & Gloria Shayne Baker (1962).

The pair, married at the time, wrote it as a plea for peace during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Regney had been invited by a record producer to write a Christmas song, but he was hesitant due to the commercialism of the Christmas holiday.1

The kings of Tarshish and of the isles shall bring presents: the kings of Sheba and Seba shall offer gifts. Yea, all kings shall fall down before him: all nations shall serve him. Ps 72:10-11

Said the night wind to the little lamb
Do you see what I see
Way up in the sky little lamb
Do you see what I see
A star, a star
Dancing in the night
With a tail as big as a kite
With a tail as big as a kite

Said the little lamb to the Shepherd boy
Do you hear what I hear
Ringing through the sky Shepherd boy
Do you hear what I hear
A song, a song
High above the trees
With a voice as big as the sea
With a voice as big as the sea

Said the Shepard boy to the mighty king
Do you know what I know
In your palace wall mighty king
Do you know what I know
A child, a child
Shivers in the cold
Let us bring him silver and gold 
Let us bring him silver and gold

Said the king to the people everywhere
Listen to what I say
Pray for peace people everywhere
Listen to what I say
The child, the child
Sleeping in the night
He will bring us goodness and light
He will bring us goodness and light

He will bring us goodness and light

 

Go Tell It On The Mountain

(Originally an old Negro Spiritual probably based on Is 52:7 and Luke 2)

How beautiful upon the mountains
Are the feet of him who brings good news,
Who proclaims peace,
Who brings glad tidings of good things,
Who proclaims salvation,
Who says to Zion,
“Your God reigns!” Is 52:7

While shepherds kept their watching
Over silent flocks by night
Behold throughout the heavens
There shone a holy light

The shepherds feared and trembled
When lo above the earth
Rang out the angel chorus
That hailed our saviour’s birth

Go, tell it on the mountain
Over the hills and everywhere
Go, tell it on the mountain
That Jesus Christ is born

Go, tell it on the mountain
Over the hills and everywhere
Go, tell it on the mountain
That Jesus Christ is born

Go tell it on the mountain
Is born
Go tell it on the mountain
Is born now
Go tell it on the mountain
Is born
Go tell it, go tell it, go tell it on the

The shepherds feared and trembled
When lo above the earth
Rang out the angel chorus
That hailed our saviour’s birth

Down in a lowly manger
Our humble Christ was born
And god send us salvation
That blessed Christmas morn

Go, tell it on the mountain
Over the hills and everywhere
Go, tell it on the mountain
That Jesus Christ is born

Go tell it on the mountain
Is born
Go tell it on the mountain
Is born now
Go tell it on the mountain
Is born
Jesus Christ is born

Go tell it on the mountain
Is born
Go tell it on the mountain
Is born now
Go tell it on the mountain
Is born

Go tell it on the mountain
Go tell it on the mountain
He is born
Go tell it on the mountain
‘Cause Jesus Christ is born

Go tell it on the mountain
Go tell it on the mountain
He is born
Go tell it on the mountain
Go tell it, go tell it, go tell it on the mountain.

Hallelujah Chorus, Handel from the Psalms

There is so much Scripture in Handel’s Messiah, this is just the chorus, but following is a list of Bible verses that it was based upon. So uplifting to read really. You can click each link, or copy and paste entire string and search all on a Bible site.

Is 40:1-5; Hag 2:6-7; Mal 3:1-3; Is 7:14; Matt 1:23; Is 40:9, Is 52:7; Is 60:1; Luke 2:8-11; Zech 9:9-10; Is 35:5-6; Is 40:11; Matt 11:28-30; John 1:29; Is 53:3-6; Ps 22:7-8; Ps 69:20; Lam 1:12; Is 53:8; Ps 16:10; Acts 2:27; Ps 24:7-10; Rom 10:15; Rom 10:18; Ps 2:1-3; Ps 2:9; Rev 19:6; Rev 11:15; Rev 19:16; Job 19:25-26; 1 Cor 15:20-22; 1 Cor 15:51-57; Rom 8:31-34; Rev 5:9; Rev 5:12-14

Hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah
Hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah

For the lord God omnipotent reigneth
Hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah
For the lord God omnipotent reigneth
Hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah
For the lord God omnipotent reigneth
Hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah

Hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah
Hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah
(For the lord God omnipotent reigneth)
Hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah

For the lord God omnipotent reigneth
(Hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah)
Hallelujah

The kingdom of this world;
Is become
The kingdom of our Lord
And of His Christ
And of His Christ

And He shall reign for ever and ever
And he shall reign forever and ever
And he shall reign forever and ever

And he shall reign forever and ever

King of kings forever and ever hallelujah hallelujah
And lord of lords forever and ever hallelujah hallelujah
King of kings forever and ever hallelujah hallelujah
And lord of lords forever and ever hallelujah hallelujah
King of kings forever and ever hallelujah hallelujah
And lord of lords
King of kings and lord of lords

And he shall reign
And he shall reign
And he shall reign
He shall reign
And he shall reign forever and ever

King of kings forever and ever
And lord of lords hallelujah hallelujah
And he shall reign forever and ever

King of kings and lord of lords
King of kings and lord of lords
And he shall reign forever and ever

Forever and ever and ever and ever
(King of kings and lord of lords)

Hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah
Hallelujah

 

Hark! The Herald Angels Sing

Written by Wesley, these are some of the verses it is said he used.

1 Tim 6:14-15; Rev 17:14; Rev 19:16; Luke 2:14; Rom 5:10; Col 1:21-22; Ps 67:4; Ps 19:1; Ps 97:6; Luke 2:11; Rev 5:13; Is 7:14; Matt 1:23; Is 9:6; Mal 4:2; John 1:9; John 8:12; Mal 4:2; Phil 2:5-7; John 5:24; John 3:3

Hark! the herald angels sing
Glory to the new-born King
Peace on earth and mercy mild
God and sinners reconciled

Joyful, all ye nations, rise
Join the triumph of the skies
With angelic host proclaim
Christ is born in Bethlehem

Hark! the herald angels sing
Glory to the new-born King

Christ, by highest heaven adored
Christ, the everlasting Lord

Late in time behold him come
Offspring of the Virgin’s womb

Hail the Flesh, the God Head see
Hail the incarnate Deity

Pleased as man with man to dwell
Jesus, our Emmanuel!
Hark! the herald angels sing
Glory to the new-born King

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 sons of earth
Born to give them second birth

Hark! the herald angels sing
Glory to the new-born King

 

It Came Upon The Midnight Clear

by Edmund H. Sears

 

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. Luke 2:13-14

 

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, goodwill to men

From heavens all gracious King!”

The world in solemn stillness lay

To hear the angels sing.

 

Still through the cloven skies they come,

With peaceful wings unfurled;

And still their heavenly music floats

O’er all the weary world:

Above its sad and lowly plains

They bend on hovering wing,

And ever o’er its Babel sounds

The blessed angels sing.

 

O 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;

Oh rest beside the weary road

And hear the angels sing.

 

For lo! the days are hastening on,

By prophets seen of old,

When with the ever-circling years

Shall come the time foretold,

When the new heaven and earth shall own

The Prince of Peace, their King,

And the whole world send back the song

Which now the angels sing.

 

I Pray On Christmas Day

 Short bio: This is a song with music and lyrics both written by Harry Connick Jr. and released in 1993.  I pray that his prayers are being answered.

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Pr 3:5-6


Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. 1 Pet 1:6-7

I pray on Christmas

That the Lord will see me through

I pray on Christmas

He’ll show me what to do

 

I pray on Christmas

He’ll help me understand

And I pray on Christmas

He’ll take me by the hand

 

I pray on Christmas

That the sick will soon be strong

I pray on Christmas

The Lord will hear my song

 

I pray on Christmas

That God will lead the way

And I pray on Christmas

He’ll get me through another day

 

I pray on Christmas

I pray on Christmas

I pray on Christmas

He’ll get me through another day

 

I pray on Christmas

All our problems gonna be worked out

I pray on Christmas

God’ll show us what love’s about

 

I pray on Christmas

To do your will each day

And I pray on Christmas

That I’ll be with you in heaven some day

 

I pray on Christmas

Oh, the sick will soon be strong

I pray on Christmas

The Lord will hear my song

 

I pray on Christmas

That God will lead the way

And I pray I really pray on Christmas

He’ll get me through another day

He’ll get me through another day…

 

O Come All Ye Faithful

 

By John Francis Wade

Ps 95:1; Ps 95:6; Luke 19:38; Luke 2:4-20; Matt 2:1-12

 

O come, all ye faithful

Joyful and triumphant

O come ye, o come ye to Bethlehem

Come and behold Him

Born the King of Angels!

O come, let us adore Him

O come, let us adore Him

O come, let us adore Him

Christ the Lord

 

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye faithful to Bethlehem

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye faithful to Bethlehem

 

Oh, sing, choirs of angels

Sing in exultation

Oh, come, oh come ye to Bethlehem

Come and behold Him

Born the King of Angels

O come, let us adore Him

O come, let us adore Him

O come, let us adore Him

Christ the Lord

 

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye faithful to Bethlehem

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye faithful to Bethlehem

O come, all ye

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye faithful to Bethlehem

O come, all ye faithful

(O come, all ye faithful, o come, all ye faithful)

Joyful and triumphant

(O come, all ye faithful to Bethlehem)

Come and behold Him

(O come, all ye faithful, o come, all ye faithful)

Born the King of Angels

O come, let us adore Him

O come, let us adore Him

O come, let us adore Him

Christ the Lord

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye faithful

O come, all ye faithful to Bethlehem

 

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

This song is rich with Scripture and prophecy, I have filled in small snippets. I like one of Selah’s versions on it, the background music just has more of a Hebraic feel to it.

Is 11; Is 7:14; 1 Pet 1:11; Rom 15:8-13; Is 9:2; Is 22:22; Is 33:22; Hag 2:7; Is 2:4

[Verse 1]

O come, O come, Emmanuel (Isaiah 7:14)

And ransom captive Israel (Isaiah 55:10-11)

That mourns in lonely exile here

Until the Son of God appear

 

[Refrain]
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel

 

[Verse 2]

O come, O come, Thou Lord of might
Who to Thy tribes, on Sinai’s height
In ancient times didst give the law
In cloud, and majesty and awe

 

[Refrain]
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel

 

[Verse 3]

O come, Thou Rod of Jesse, free

Thine own from Satan’s tyranny (Isaiah 11:1Isaiah 10 Romans 15:8-13)

From depths of Hell Thy people save

And give them victory o’er the grave (1 Corinthians 15:54-57Hos 13:14Is. 25:8-9; Rev. 20:13-15)

 

Rejoice, rejoice, Emmanuel

Shall come to thee, o Israel

 [Verse 4]
 

O come, Thou Dayspring, come and cheer (Isaiah 9:2Luke 1:69-82Malachi 4:2Ephesians 5:142 Peter 1:19)

Our spirits by Thine advent here
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night
And death’s dark shadows put to flight

[Refrain]
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel

 

[Verse 5]

O come, Thou Key of David, come
And open wide our heavenly home (Isaiah 22:22Isaiah 9:6)
Make safe the way that leads on high
And close the path to misery

 

[Refrain]
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel

 

[Verse 6]
O come, Thou Wisdom from on high, Isaiah 11:2-3
And order all things, far and nigh
To us the path of knowledge show
And cause us in her ways to go

 

[Refrain]
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel

 

[Verse 7]
O come, desire of nations, bind
In one the hearts of all mankind
Bid Thou our sad divisions cease
And be Thyself our King of peace

 

[Refrain]
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel

Come and cheer

Our spirits by Thine advent here

Disperse the gloomy clouds of night

 

And death’s dark shadows put to flight

Rejoice, rejoice, Emmanuel

Shall come to thee, o Israel

 

O come, Thou Key of David, come

And open wide our heavenly home

Make safe the way that leads on high

And close the path to misery

 

Rejoice, rejoice, Emmanuel

Shall come to thee, o Israel

 

O come, O come, Thou Lord of might

Who to Thy tribes, on Sinai’s height

In ancient times did’st give the Law

In cloud, and majesty and awe

 

Rejoice, rejoice, Emmanuel

Shall come to thee, o Israel

 

O Holy Night

Short bio: Wikipedia explains it was first composed by Adolphe Adam in 1847 to the French poem “Minuit, chrétiens” (Midnight, Christians) by a wine merchant and poet, Placide Cappeau (1808–1877) who had no interest in God. In both the French original and in the two familiar English versions of the carol, as well as many other languages, the text reflects on the birth of Jesus and of humanity’s redemption.  (French: “Minuit Chretiens!” or “Cantique de Noël”)

Luke 2:8; Gen 3:17-19; Rom 8:19-23; John 3:15-16; 1 John 4:17; Rom 13:12; Phil 2:10-11; Luke 2:4-14; Heb 1:3; Rev 19:16; Phil 4:18; Is 53:3-4; Heb 4:15; John 13:34-35; Mark 12:30-31; Eph 2:17; Philemon 16; Rev 21:4; Col 3:16

 

 O holy night! The stars are brightly shining,

It is the night of our dear Saviour’s birth.

Long lay the world in sin and error pining,

Till He appear’d 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 divine, O 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 come the wise men from the 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 weaknesses 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 power and glory evermore proclaim.

His power and glory evermore proclaim.

 

O Little Town of Bethlehem

 

But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.  Mic 5:2

O little town of Bethlehem (Matt 2:1-6)
How still we see thee lie
Above thy deep and dreamless sleep
The silent stars go by
Yet in thy dark streets shineth
The everlasting Light (Is 60:19-20)
The hopes and fears of all the years
Are met in thee tonight

For Christ is born of Mary
And gathered all above
While mortals sleep, the angels keep
Their watch of wondering love
O morning stars together
Proclaim the holy birth
And praises sing to God the King
And Peace to men on earth

How silently, how silently
The wondrous gift is given
So God imparts to human hearts
The blessings of His heaven
No ear may hear His coming
But in this world of sin
Where meek souls will receive him still
The dear Christ enters in

O holy Child of Bethlehem
Descend to us, we pray
Cast out our sin and enter in
Be born to us today
We hear the Christmas angels
The great glad tidings tell
O come to us, abide with us
Our Lord Emmanuel
O come to us, abide with us
Our Lord Emmanuel

 

Silent Night

Luke 2:4-14; Is 7:14; John 1:14

Joseph Mohr wrote the lyrics in German to the melody composed by Franz Xaver Gruber who was a schoolmaster and organist. It was made popular by Bing Crosby in 1935 as the fourth best-selling single of all time.

Silent night, holy night!
All is calm, all is bright.
Round yon Virgin, Mother and Child.
Holy infant so tender and mild,
Sleep in heavenly peace,
Sleep in heavenly peace

Silent night, holy night!
Shepherds quake at the sight.
Glories stream from heaven afar
Heavenly hosts sing Alleluia,
Christ the Savior is born!
Christ the Savior is born

Silent night, holy night!
Son of God love’s pure light.
Radiant beams from Thy holy face
With dawn of redeeming grace,
Jesus Lord, at Thy birth
Jesus Lord, at Thy birth

Once in Royal David’s City

Scripture References: Luke 1:34-35; Luke 2; 1 Chr 11:4-8; 1 Chr 15:1; 1 Kings 2:10; 1 Sam 17:12; Mic 5:2; John 1:1, John 1:14, Col 2:9; Heb 4:15-16; Is 53:3; John 11:33-35; Heb 12:2; Luke 18:17; John 1:12; John 14:6; John 14:1-3

 

Once in Royal David’s city

Stood a lowly cattle shed,

Where a mother laid her Baby

In a manger for His bed:

Mary was that mother mild,

Jesus Christ her little Child.

 

He came down to earth from heaven,

Who is God and Lord of all,

And His shelter was a stable,

And His cradle was a stall;

With the poor, and mean, and lowly,

Lived on earth our Saviour holy.

 

And through all His wondrous childhood

He would honour and obey,

Love and watch the lowly maiden,

In whose gentle arms He lay:

Christian children all must be

Mild, obedient, good as He.

 

For he is our childhood’s pattern;

Day by day, like us He grew;

He was little, weak and helpless,

Tears and smiles like us He knew;

And He feeleth for our sadness,

And He shareth in our gladness.

 

And our eyes at last shall see Him,

Through His own redeeming love;

For that Child so dear and gentle

Is our Lord in heaven above,

And He leads His children on

To the place where He is gone.

 

Not in that poor lowly stable,

With the oxen standing by,

We shall see Him; but in heaven,

Set at God’s right hand on high;

Where like stars His children crowned

All in white shall wait around. (Link to this hymn)

The First Noel

Luke 2; Matt 2

Noel is an early Modern English synonym for Christmas.

 The First Noel the angel did say
Was to certain poor shepherds in fields as they lay;
In fields as they lay, keeping their sheep,
On a cold winter’s night that was so deep.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel,
Born is the King of Israel.

 

They looked up and saw a star
Shining in the east beyond them far,

And to the earth it gave great light,
And so it continued both day and night.

And by the light of that same star
Three wise men came from country far;
To seek for a king was their intent,
And to follow the star wherever it went.

This star drew nigh to the northwest,
O’er Bethlehem it took it rest,
And there it did both stop and stay
Right over the place where Jesus lay.

Then entered in those wise men three
Full reverently upon their knee,
and offered there in his presence
Their gold, and myrrh, and frankincense.

Then let us all with one accord
Sing praises to our heavenly Lord;
That hath made heaven and earth of naught,
And with his blood mankind hath bought

 

The Old Rugged Cross

(The Christmas tree)

On a hill far away, stood an old rugged Cross
The emblem of suff’ring and shame
And I love that old Cross where the dearest and best
For a world of lost sinners was slain

So I’ll cherish the old rugged Cross
Till my trophies at last I lay down
I will cling to the old rugged Cross
And exchange it some day for a crown

Oh, that old rugged Cross so despised by the world
Has a wondrous attraction for me
For the dear Lamb of God, left his Glory above
To bear it to dark Calvary

So I’ll cherish the old rugged Cross
Till my trophies at last I lay down
I will cling to the old rugged Cross
And exchange it some day for a crown

In the old rugged Cross, stain’d with blood so divine
A wondrous beauty I see
For the dear Lamb of God, left his Glory above
To pardon and sanctify me

So I’ll cherish the old rugged Cross
Till my trophies at last I lay down
I will cling to the old rugged Cross
And exchange it some day for a crown

To the old rugged Cross, I will ever be true
Its shame and reproach gladly bear
Then He’ll call me some day to my home far away
Where his glory forever I’ll share

So I’ll cherish the old rugged Cross
Till my trophies at last I lay down
I will cling to the old rugged Cross
And exchange it some day for a crown

 

The Little Drummer Boy

Short Bio: Recorded by the Von Trapp Family Singers

Written in 1941. It was originally known as “Carol of the Drum” and is based on a traditional Czech carol. No real Bible verses for this except how a child comes to Him in such simplicity, giving the King all he had, a song on his drum.

 

Come they told me

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

 

A new born King to see

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

 

Our finest gifts we bring

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

 

To lay before the king

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

Rum-pum-pum-pum

Rum-pum-pum-pum

 

So to honor Him

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

When we come

Pum-pum-pum-pum

Pa-rum-pum-pum

 

Little baby

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

I am a poor boy too

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

 

I have no gift to bring

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

That’s fit to give our King

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

Rum-pum-pum-pum

Rum-pum-pum-pum

 

Shall I play for you

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

 

Mary nodded

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

The ox and lamb kept time

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

 

I played my drum for Him

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

I played my best for Him

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

Rum-pum-pum-pum

Rum-pum-pum-pum

 

Then He smiled at me

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

Me and my drum

Oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh

 

Come they told me

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

A new born King to see

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum

Me and my drum

 

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