I'm a fan of most Christmas songs, but the ten here are among my favorites because they mostly stick to the story yet offer intriguing ancient or new perspectives. There is nostalgia in my preferences, but I know that old songs stay alive because people have updated the lyrics and tunes. I hope these presentations originally used with the Surge kids' class have incremented your appreciation and joy in Christ Jesus our Savior.
"Joy to the World" is among the most loved of Christmas carols, but it quite lacks these proper Christmas markers and others like "baby", "sheep", "manger", and "star". The third verse claims that with the Lord's coming there will be no more sins, sorrows, and thorns. Is that the case? Jesus' words and work in Judea changed the world, but we still have sins, sorrows, and thorns. The fourth verse claims that, "He rules the world with truth and grace". We don't see this yet. To riff another Christmas song, "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."
Such shortages have led some to consider "Joy to the World" to be only a little about Christmas. It's more about celebrating Christ's next coming. Try that perspective as we now review the lyrics. It's also about his coming every day into the lives of all who will receive their King. It is a multi-dimensional song. "Joy to the World" is a song for all seasons.
The vibrant background images here are by our contemporary, artist John August Swanson.
At The Surge we love doing things together... that includes writing a blog! Here are a few of our main contributing authors:
Our fearless leader, Dwaine is the lead pastor at The Surge. His experience in counter terrorism with the CIA prepared him for ministry and he likes dogs and babies even more than E does.
E (short for Eric Reiss) is the Wingman at The Surge and likes dogs, music, Mexican food, his wife Karen and his little girl Evangeline... not necessarily in that order.