Thursday, December 24, 2009

Inspiration & Encouragement: Sing Joy to the World – The LORD Is Come!

Behold, I bring you good news of great JOY which will be for all the people!
(Luke 2)

JOY 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 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.

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.

Words: Isaac Watts, The Psalms of Da­vid, 1719.
Music: An­ti­och (believed to have originated with Handel) arranged by Low­ell Ma­son, 1836

Did you know that Watts based the words of "Joy to the World" on Psalm 98 and wrote it as a hymn glorifying Christ's triumphant return at the end of the age, rather than as a Christmas song celebrating his first coming as a babe born in a stable?

The LORD has made known His salvation;
He has revealed His righteousness in the sight of the nations.
He has remembered His lovingkindness and His faithfulness to the house of Israel;
All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.
Shout joyfully to the LORD, all the earth;
Break forth and sing for joy and sing praises.
(Psalm 98)

Meditate on those truths. Make them personal. Rejoice in your Savior!

Once again, I'm joining "Just for the JOY of It" – and sharing the Savior, the Best Reason to REJOICE on Christmas Eve!