Theology of Christmas Carols Part 3 – O Holy Night .pdf

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Theology  of  Christmas  Carols  –  O  Holy  Night  
Intro:  
HISTORY  OF  O  HOLY  NIGHT  
A  Socialist,  A  Jew,  and  an  Abolitionist  write  a  Christmas  song…  
1.  The  author  was  not  a  Christian.    
In  1847,  a  well  known  Socialist  poet  Placide  Cappeau  was  approached  by  a  local  
Priest  to  write  a  poem  for  a  Christmas  Mass.  He  decided  to  put  it  to  music  so  he  
asked  a  Jewish  man,  Adolphe  Charles  Adams.  It  became  a  hit  in  churches,  but  was  
later  was  banned  by  the  Catholic  Church.  
2.  The  song  was  a  favorite  of  abolitionists  during  the  American  Civil  War.    
John  Sullivan  Dwight,  a  fervent  abolitionist  fell  in  love  with  the  song  and  translated  
the  song  into  English  and  published  it  with  the  title  “O  Holy  Night”  in  a  American  
magazine.  The  song  caught  on  quickly,  especially  in  the  North  during  the  civil  war.  
3.  It  was  the  first  song  ever  broadcast  live  
Canadian  inventor  Reginald  Fessenden  was  an  early  pioneer  of  radio  broadcasting  
and  claimed  to  have  made  the  first  ever  transmission  of  voice  and  music.  
 
HISTORICAL  CONTEXT  OF  JESUS’  DAY  
First,  when  Christ  was  born,  the  word  of  God  had  not  been  heard  for  four  centuries.  
Second,  the  people  of  God  were  under  the  oppressive  rule  of  Rome.  (all  the  world  
taxed)  
Third,  the  nation  of  Israel  was  fracturing.  Pharisees,  Sadducees,  Essenes,  and  Zealots  
 
How  cool  is  it  that  New  Years  is  right  after  Christmas?  Right  after  Christ  came,  new  
life  came!  
This  carol  teaches:  1.  The  World  Needs  A  New  Morning,  The  World  Needs  Faith,  and  
The  World  Needs  Love  and  Peace.  
O  holy  night!  The  stars  are  brightly  shining  
It  is  the  night  of  the  dear  Savior'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!  

 
Two  Keys  To  See  Your  Life  Shift  -­    
Isaiah  43:19  Behold,  I  am  doing  a  new  thing;  now  it  springs  forth,  do  you  not  
perceive  it?  
 
1.  Recognize  the  Holiness  of  the  Moment  –  It  is  the  night!  
 
2.  Recognize  the  Dawning  of  the  New  Day  –  The  soul  felt  its  worth,  A  thrill  of  hope    
 
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  Orient  land  
The  King  of  Kings  lay  thus  in  lowly  manger  
In  all  our  trials  born  to  be  our  friend  
 
Two  Keys  to  ‘Make  It’  –    
Philippians  4:13  I  can  do  all  things  through  Christ  which  strengtheneth  me.  
 
3.  The  Faith  That  Will  Always  Lead  You  –  Glowing  hearts  standing  in  his  presence  
 
4.  The  Friendship  That  Will  Never  Leave  You  –  He’s  been  where  you  are  
 
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  
 
Two  Keys  To  Knowing  God’s  Heart  –    
Rom.  8:31  What,  then,  shall  we  say  in  response  to  these  things?  If  God  is  for  us,  who  
can  be  against  us?  
 
5.  The  Heart  of  God  is  Love  –  Law  of  love,  gospel  of  peace.  He  taught  us  HIS  law  
and  HIS  gospel  
 
6.  The  Heart  of  God  is  Justice  –  All  oppression  shall  cease  –  The  slave  is  our  
brother  
 
Conclusion:  Worship,  The  Response  of  the  Heart  
 
‘Raise  the  chorus  of  joy,  let  all  within  us  praise  his  holy  name’  
 
Fall  on  your  knees  
Oh  hear  the  angel  voices  

Oh  night  divine  
Oh  night  when  Christ  was  born  
Oh  night  divine  
Oh  night  divine  
 
There are our own friends and family who are shackled by grief and depression and
loneliness, and people we don’t even know who are held in bondage by oppressive
systems and the power of prejudice. Do we have a song to sing to them, a song about
hope? Do we have a story to tell them, a story about a the worth of their soul and new and
glorious morn? I believe we do.
 


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