"Joy to the World."

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year,” goes the song and I agree wholeheartedly. For as long as I can remember, Christmas has been my favorite season. Charlie recently joked that if it were up to me, we’d start advent in early September. Is that so wrong? I love the sights, the smells, the food, the anticipation, the thoughtfulness, and the music. Oh the music. I love it all: old carols, new pop tunes, and everything in between.

So often with songs I’ve sung over and over, I can simply voice the syllables without ever following the meaning beneath. “Joy to the World, the Lord is come! Let earth receive her King.” When you hear, “Lord,” don’t think the feudal system, a man that rules a manor. This isn’t that kind of lord at all. Nor is it just another name, but often it’s translated from the Greek word for Caesar. Read King of the whole world. King of Kings. There’s a whole article that could be written for that, but I’d rather look forward to what is often sung as the third verse.

“Cursed is the ground thanks to you; in painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, but you will eat the grain of the field.” Genesis 3:17-18. No, the curse is not wheat bread, but thorns and thistles. The whole world will actively fight against us because it is cursed. Now, enter stage right, the King, the seed of a woman. He has come into the World to break the curse. This is what we are singing: “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.”

That is the meaning of Christmas. The promised King has come into the world and is undoing the curse. He is redeeming what we broke as far as the curse is found. This is why we join with Heaven and nature in singing, “Joy to the World.”

“And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great JOY, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:10-11.

Merry Christmas.

- Andy