The beloved classic, Joy to the World, was inspired by Psalm 28. But is it really a Christmas hymn?
“Shout joyfully to the LORD, all the earth; Break forth in song, rejoice, and sing praises…” – Psalm 28:4
“Joy to the World” Trivia:
- First published by Isaac Watts in 1719
- Music adapted by Lowell Mason, 1839
- Handel used some of the same melody/phrasing in several places in The Messiah.
- Original tune believed to predate Handel and is commonly known as “Antioch”.
- Originally recorded in 1954 by Percy Faith.
The rest of the story:
“Watts wrote the words of “Joy to the World” as a hymn glorifying Christ’s triumphant return at the end of the age, rather than a Christmas song celebrating his first coming as a babe born in a stable.” (Wikipedia)
“For He is coming to judge the earth. With righteousness He shall judge the world, and the peoples with equity.” – Psalm 28:9
Perhaps our Christmas celebrations should begin to include more anticipation of Christ’s return that of the anniversary of His birth. Your thoughts?