Christmas Carols - O Holy Night
The stars are brightly shining
It is the night of our dear Savior's birth
Long lay the world in sin and error pining
'Til He appeared and the soul felt its worth
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn
Fall on your knees
O hear the Angel voices
O night divine
O night when Christ was born
O night divine, O night
O night divine
Truly He taught us to love one another
His law is love and His Gospel is Peace
Chains shall He break, for his child is our brother
And in His name, all oppression shall cease
Sweet hymns of joy in gratеful chorus raise we
Let all within us Praisе His Holy name
Christ is the Lord
Their name forever praise we
O night, O night divine
O night, O holy night
O Holy Night is one of the most powerful hymns we sing at Christmas time announcing the birth of Christ. The music composition has huge swells that seem to lift you up to “where the stars are brightly shining” and carries you to the place that you want to “fall on your knees” in adoration. It’s a beautiful piece of music that evokes emotion rightly directed at our Savior.
The lyrics, ironically written by an atheist named Placide Cappeau, speak of the great hope that Christ’s birth brings to people: freedom. Although that word is not used specifically, it is described throughout the song.
A world that is weary from waiting for a savior, rejoices when he finally comes; the world is freed from a long season of waiting.
When people are freed from the bonds of sin, oppression ceases.
God put flesh on and come to live among us. Jesus came for us, to save us and set us free. This means that we are valued and our “souls find their worth”. God kept his promise to send a savior to set his people who were held captive free.
We find this theme of freedom throughout scripture, not just verses that speak of Jesus’ birth. In Isaiah 61:1-2, we hear about the proclamation of “good news”, freedom for captives, and release from darkness; all of which is possible because of Jesus.
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,
2 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
I think the common answer that we give when asked, “What has Jesus set you free from?” would be that he sets us free from sin. That is not a wrong answer but it is woefully incomplete. Yes, Jesus has set us free from sin but he has done so much more. We are set free to live an abundant life (John 10:10). We are set free to fulfill the purpose for which we were created (1 Peter 2:9). We are set free to be a part of something much bigger than ourselves (Matt. 28:19). We are set free from our desires that try to control us as if we are mindless zombies (Galatians 5:13-18). These are just a few of the strengths of our freedom that Christ has provided for us.
No wonder the song Oh Holy Night is so powerful! If we take time to reflect on this truth, it will cause us to fall on our knees in awe and praise for our God who sets us free. So, the next time you feel unworthy, trapped, or weary, remember Jesus kept his promise and came for you. His birth means your freedom.
The night of Jesus’ birth was definitely a holy night worth rejoicing in the angels. This Christmas season I hope you celebrate your freedom and it causes “all within you praise his holy name”.