Songs of Christmas

"When words fail, music speaks." —Hans Christian Anderson

I know that quote does not come from the Bible, but I think it expresses what is going on when it comes to the four songs found in Luke 1 & 2.

There is Mary’s song – what is popularly called “the Magnifacat” in Luke 1:46-55. Mary is so moved by the vision of God, the lover of the lowly, that she breaks out into song. Only a song could convey her joy.

Then there is Zechariah’s song, from Luke 1:67-79. Zechariah, the father of John the Baptist, who nine months earlier could not believe that his wife would have a child, now, filled with the Holy Spirit, erupts into song. Only a song can broadcast his wonder of the long awaited Messiah coming!

In the fields, with only the shepherds as their audience, the largest (and best) choir ever heard suddenly appeared (Luke 2:13-14). The angels’ song in the middle of the night announced the birth of the Savior. Would just spoken words have adequately expressed God’s glory?

The fourth song is found eight days after Jesus’ birth. It was sung by a pious old man, Simeon, who has been waiting and hoping for God’s promise, the Lord’s Christ. And when he saw that little eight day old baby, he could not contain himself. And like the others, he burst forth in song.

Our holiday classics, like Away in a Manger and Silent Night, rank among the most beloved compositions ever penned. But when it comes to expressing what otherwise would be inexpressible, the songs sung by Mary, Zechariah, the Angels and Simeon were the best.

I want to invite you to join us each Sunday morning during this Christmas season as we take a look at these four remarkable Songs of Christmas. Might we join together in singing God’s praises as we celebrate the gift of His Son, Jesus Christ.