Today’s devotional is by Alison Kernohan 

My favourite Christmas carol is ‘O Come All Ye Faithful’. The wonderful melody and richness of the lyrics bring back such warm memories of singing it in church as a child and carol singing door-to-door.

The carol was written in the 18th century and is one of the most well-known and popular Christmas carols even to this day. When we sing carols year after year, it can be easy to become familiar with the lyrics, but if we take time to look more closely at the words we’re singing, we can discover great and powerful truths that inspire and encourage us to lift up our gaze and focus on God, His holiness and His sacrifice.

‘O Come All Ye Faithful’ invites us to remember the humility of Jesus’ birth through the lyrics ‘Lo, He abhors not the Virgin’s womb’, and challenges us to recognise the lengths Christ went to to be born on this earth.

The third verse is a call to the heavenly realms to sing! It says ‘Sing, choirs of angels, sing in exultation. Sing, all ye citizens of heaven above!” Then we read the exclamation, ‘Glory to God!’ All the glory, all the honour, all the praise should be to God and God alone. Our praise should be a reflection of all that God has done for us and our joy in who He is.

The final verse encourages us to celebrate the joy of Christ’s birth and recognise that it is a ‘happy morn’, not just on December 25th but every day when we have accepted Jesus as our Lord and Saviour. Some modern versions of the carol have added in the lyrics, ‘For He alone is worthy’ and ‘We’ll give him all the glory’, encouraging us to further reflect on the glory of God and remember that He is worthy of all our praise and devotion.  

We are invited repeatedly throughout the carol to ‘Come, let us adore Him’. This should not just be words that fall from our mouths with ease, but they should be an ongoing cry of our hearts. Let us adore Him in the hard times. Let us adore Him in the good times. Let us adore Him in the uncertain times, with hearts full of gratitude and awe.

So this year, when singing ‘O Come All Ye Faithful,’ let us sing with confidence knowing who God is; thankfulness for all He has done; and a renewed reverence for ‘God from true God, Light from Light eternal’, who appeared in the flesh. Amazing! Come, let us adore Him!