‘O Holy Night’ tells us the true story
The story of Christmas is one of the most significant and powerful stories recorded. I am reluctant to use the word story, because it implies fiction or tradition. Christmas is not only a tradition like many think, but an event that changed the world. We need to be careful not to celebrate the tradition and celebrate the event – the birth of Jesus Christ, our Saviour.
Many wonderful things have been written about the birth of Jesus. One of my favorite is the Christmas carol “O Holy Night.” Quite often we sing these great songs and don’t listen to the words. I would like to draw attention to some of the words in this wonderful carol.
“O Holy Night, the stars are brightly shining, 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.
“Fall on you knees! O hear the angel voices!
“O night divine, o night when Christ was born,
“O night divine! O night, o night divine!”
“It is the night of the dear Saviour’s birth.” The word saviour means deliverer. To save us! To save us from what?
“Long lay the world in sin and error pining.” (Rom 3:23 New King James Version) “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”
(John 3:16 NKJV) “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
(John 3:17 NKJV) “For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.”
(John 3:18 NKJV) “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”
“Till He appeared and the soul felt its worth.” Are we valuable? We are so valuable to God that He took on the form of a man and died a sinner’s death that sinners might inherit the kingdom of God and eternal life with Him.
“A thrill of hope.” (Pet 1:3 NKJV) Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
(Pet 1:4 NKJV) to an inheritance undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you.
“For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.” (2 Cor 5:17 NKJV) Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
“Fall on your knees.” To me this is the most compelling statement. Falling to our knees refers to repentance from sin, the receiving of the greatest gift – the gift of salvation by receiving Jesus Christ as our Saviour, and worshipping Him as Lord and Master of our lives.
“O hear the angel voices.” (Heb 1:6 NKJV) But when He again brings the firstborn into the world, He says: “Let all the angels of God worship Him.”
(Luke 15:10NKJV) “Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”
“O night divine.” There was a time when God chose for the saviour to be born. That night was an event that changes the world and the destiny of all those who receive Him. Jesus was born the Saviour of the world. Salvation is available to who so ever will. In order to receive the gift of salvation we must acknowledge who Jesus is, acknowledge our need for a saviour, repent of our sins and receive Him as our personal Saviour. We must place our trust in Him and make Him Lord of our lives.
Let’s take some time this Christmas to examine our heart and ask ourselves the question, “Is Jesus really Lord of my life and my saviour?” If not, we cannot claim the promise.
Editor’s note: Leo Kruger, pastor of Valley Christian Fellowship, is president of the Carson Valley Ministers’ Association. Beginning in February, the association will write a twice monthly column called “Reflections of the Word.”