Can you imagine Christmas without any caroling?

By Mark Smith, Mukilteo Presbyterian Church | Dec 18, 2013

Without a doubt one of the greatest gifts of God is music. Can you imagine a world without song? Can you imagine Christmas with no carols?

Some things are so wonderfully good, you just have to sing about them.

It comes as no surprise when the angel announced the coming of God into this world in Jesus that the angels should sing “Glory to God in the highest!” And we’ve been singing and playing our instruments and dancing to the glory of God ever since!

Martin Luther, the great Protestant reformer, was a lover of music. Of music he wrote:

“I wish to see all arts, principally music, in the service of Him who gave and created them. Music is a fair and glorious gift of God. I would not for the world forego my humble share of music.

“Singers are never sorrowful, but are merry, and smile through their troubles in song. Music makes people kinder, gentler, more staid and reasonable.

“I am strongly persuaded that after theology there is no art than can be placed on a level with music; for besides theology, music is the only art capable of affording peace and joy of the heart...

“The devil flees before the sound of music almost as much as before the Word of God.”

Luther also said: "Music is the art of the prophets, the only art that can calm the agitations of the soul; it is one of the most magnificent and delightful presents God has given us...."

Music speaks to the heart and touches the soul in a way that few things can. We ought to be so grateful for musicians who have spent countless hours honing their skills and who so generously share their gifts with us, filling us with joy and good cheer.

Truly they are God’s gift to us; through their efforts, God ministers to our soul.

Music lifts us into God’s very presence; it is the means by which he speaks to us afresh of his love and of his continuing concern for all. And sacred music is a form of prayer to God.

As one hymn-writer put it, through music "we are moved in our worship to a more profound 'Alleluia!'"

The praise and the gratitude we feel toward God is such that it can only be sung. Somehow spoken words are not enough.

And so it is with Christmas: the story of God coming to the world in Jesus to save us all from sin and death is such incredible good news, it has to be sung – and then, of course, we have to respond in faith and live Christmas to the glory of God. So may it be!

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