What the Holy Night Means for Us

Linda Evans Shepherd

Have you lost your holiday cheer? Maybe you’re fretting about buying Christmas gifts or saving up for a tank of gas. Or perhaps the recession, not to mention the war, makes it hard for you to find the joy of Christmas.

Let’s push into joy by stopping to consider the great Christmas song, “O Holy Night.”

In 1847, composer Adolphe Adam set a poem to music. This simple poem was written by a French wine merchant, Placide Cappeau, to celebrate the renovation of the church organ in his hometown. Then in 1855, Minister John Sullivan Dwight translated the French lyrics into the Christmas song we sing today.

Some tried to ban this song, but the profound words continue to be sung these past 175 years, even in times of war, recession, and pandemic—just like today.

And through the years, this song remains a song of hope for all people in every trial.

Read the translated lyrics that have given millions of people hope at the profound appearance of the babe in the manger, the Son of God, sent to us. Sent to change everything.

It is the night of the dear Saviour’s birth; Long lay the world in sin and error pining, ‘Till he appeared and the soul felt its worth. A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices, For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn; Chorus Fall on your knees, Oh hear the angel voices! O night, divine! O night when Christ was born. O night, O holy 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 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!

Dear friends, despite our temporary trials, we have the hope of Christ. And that hope changes everything, for you, for me. For Christ is the Lord! Let all within us praise His Holy name.

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