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Singing Faith

December 17, 2012

There are many things that cause me to be grateful of my Anabaptist upbringing; one of them being the emphasis on singing hymns. In a day and culture where much of Christianity is turning to contemporary worship music that has more to do with emotional manipulation than truth; the ability to sing hymns that contain deep theological truths brings me much joy. These hymns that we sing have been carefully crafted in order to teach and remind us of the precious truths of Scripture. Many of these hymn writers even incorporate the very words of Scripture into the music so when we sing, we sing the very Words of God.

The title is based off of two fantastic statements in scripture; faith as a gift (Eph. 2:9) and faith as a result of “hearing the Word of Christ” (Rom. 10:17). When we sing hymns that are full of inspired truth and the very Words of God, they, along with the Holy Spirit’s work, carry with them the power to create faith in the heart of both the hearer and the singer.

I say all of this just to point out that there is no better way to spend our time this Christmas than Christmas Caroling. In the past I liked at it as a fun time of singing and hanging out with friends at Church but I have come to realize that going out caroling is a powerful “faith-builder” as well as a fun way to evangelize because of the truths that we are singing.

Parents: the task of catechizing your children is a long, drawn out process that at many times (and I am assuming here) seems hopeless. There is no better way of teaching your family the truths of scripture than having them sing, and no better way of teaching evangelism than Christmas Caroling.

Young, un-parent-like people: We love emotion and we love much of the type of music that is put out by contemporary Christian artists. Sure, there is nothing wrong with emotion but my call is that you would allow the objective truths of Scripture to cause emotion in you instead of some subjective “feeling” you get from a ‘theologically-lite’ song.

Here are two great examples of Christmas Hymns that powerfully proclaim Christ’s coming, His purpose for coming, and the true comfort that Christ’s work brings to us. Pay attention to how the songs speak of the deep truths found in scripture and allow these hymns to make your Christmas that much more God-Glorifying.

“Come Thou Long-Expected Jesus”

Come, Thou long expected Jesus
Born to set Thy people free;
From our fears and sins release us,
Let us find our rest in Thee.
Israel’s Strength and Consolation,
Hope of all the earth Thou art;
Dear Desire of every nation,
Joy of every longing heart.

Born Thy people to deliver,
Born a child and yet a King,
Born to reign in us forever,
Now Thy gracious kingdom bring.
By Thine own eternal Spirit
Rule in all our hearts alone;
By Thine all sufficient merit,
Raise us to Thy glorious throne.

“God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen”

God rest ye merry, gentlemen, let nothing you dismay,
Remember Christ our Savior was born on Christmas Day;
To save us all from Satan’s power when we were gone astray.

O tidings of comfort and joy, comfort and joy;
O tidings of comfort and joy.

From God our heavenly Father a blessed angel came,
And unto certain shepherds brought tidings of the same,
How that in Bethlehem was born the Son of God by name:

O tidings of comfort and joy, comfort and joy;
O tidings of comfort and joy.

The shepherds at those tidings rejoiced much in mind,
And left their flocks a-feeding in tempest, storm and wind,
And went to Bethlehem straightway, this blessed Babe to find

O tidings of comfort and joy, comfort and joy;
O tidings of comfort and joy.

But when to Bethlehem they came, whereat this Infant lay,
They found Him in a manger, where oxen feed on hay;
His mother Mary kneeling, unto the Lord did pray:

O tidings of comfort and joy, comfort and joy;
O tidings of comfort and joy.

Now to the Lord sing praises, all you within this place,
And with true love and brotherhood each other now embrace;
This holy tide of Christmas all other doth deface:

O tidings of comfort and joy, comfort and joy;
O tidings of comfort and joy.

“Be filled with the Spirit,
addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,
singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart,
giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father
in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Ephesians 5:18-20

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From → Hymns

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