The Carols of Christmas

In The Carols of Christmas, Alan Vermilye takes us through four well-known Christmas carols (one per week), providing us with a short history of the carol and a daily devotional about the respective carol. The carols being sung and discussed are O Holy Night, I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day, O Little Town of Bethlehem, and Hark! The Herald Angels Sing. This Advent study covers four weeks.
(Advent 2022)

Carols of Christmas – “O Holy Night” pt.1

Within this history of the carol, we should be able to see the history of the Christmas story itself – simple religious people, marginalized Jews, atheists, and censorious religious authorities all making their own contribution.
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Carols of Christmas – “O Holy Night” pt.2

In following through these meditations, or at least following through the carol itself, we sing the gospel message. Singing half a carol is like reading only half a book or watching only half of a movie – we never truly get to the end.
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Carols of Christmas – “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” pt.1

Like Whitfield’s ignoring Wesley’s instructions concerning words, so Cummings ignored Mendelssohn’s directions concerning music. Therefore, for Christmas 1856, Cummings put Wesley’s words (as amended by Whitfield) to Mendelssohn’s tune, thus giving us the Christmas carol that we sing today.
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