What is the meaning behind the lyrics of Joy to the World?

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Across the globe, 'Joy to the World' is sung every year at Christmas time to celebrate coming together! It's not only one of the oldest classic Christmas carols sung every festive season, but also one of the most beloved. However, have you ever wondered what the lyrics of 'Joy to the World' actually mean?
What is the meaning behind the lyrics of 'Joy to the World'? | Love to Sing

Across the globe, Joy to the World is sung every year at Christmas time to celebrate coming together! It's not only one of the oldest classic Christmas carols sung every festive season, but also one of the most beloved. However, have you ever wondered what the lyrics of Joy to the World actually mean? 

What is the history of 'Joy to the World'?

The lyrics of Joy to the World are based on Psalm 98, which speaks of God's salvation and return. The chorus of Joy to the World joyfully proclaims that all creation will rejoice when Jesus Christ returns.

Christians believe that Jesus is the long-awaited Messiah who came to save humanity from its sin. When Jesus returns again, he will establish his kingdom on earth and bring an end to all suffering. In joyfully singing Joy to the World, Christians express their hope and anticipation for this wonderful day.





Who wrote and composed the song?

The song was written over three centuries ago by Isaac Watts in 1719. According to Wikipedia, Isaac Watts (17 July 1674 – 25 November 1748) was an English Congregational minister, hymn writer, theologian, and logician. He was a prolific and popular hymn writer and is credited with some 750 hymns. His works include "When I Survey the Wondrous Cross", Joy to the World, and "Our God, Our Help in Ages Past". He is recognized as the "Godfather of English Hymnody"; many of his hymns remain in use today and have been translated into numerous languages. He was a well-known hymnwriter and theologian in England. 

The melody for Joy to the World was composed by Lowell Mason in 1836. Lowell Mason (January 8, 1792 – August 11, 1872) was a prominent American music educator and composer of hymn melodies, many of which are still in use today. He is credited with composing over 1,600 hymn tunes, including the popular melody for Joy to the World. He also wrote several music textbooks and was a leading figure in the development of public school music education in the United States.





What are the lyrics to Joy to the World?

Joy to the world! The Lord is come
Let earth receive her King
Let every heart prepare Him room
And heaven and nature sing
And heaven and nature sing
And heaven, and heaven, and nature sing

Joy to the Earth! The Saviour reigns
Let men their songs employ
While fields and floods, rocks, hills, and plains
Repeat the sounding joy
Repeat the sounding joy
Repeat, repeat the sounding joy

No more let sins and sorrow grow
Nor thorns infest the ground
He comes to make His blessings flow
Far as the curse is found
Far as the curse is found
Far as, far as, the curse is found

He rules the world with truth and grace
And makes the nations prove
The glories of His righteousness
And wonders of His love
And wonders of His love
And wonders, wonders, of His love!

 

Download our free downloadable PDF printable lyric sheet for Joy to the World. I don't Isaac Watts realised what he had written back in 1719 and who would have thought that a Christmas hymn written so long ago would become one of the most widely sung Christmas carols of all time?! Not only is it a beloved Christmas song, but it also has an amazing history. 

What's your favorite Christmas song? And be sure to check out our other blog posts below for more interesting facts and stories about everything Christmas!

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