For centuries Christians have gathered to sing Christmas songs. One of the many reasons I love Christmas is the music that we sing. Have you seen the 1887 painting by Hans Bachmann, entitled, “A Christmas Carol in Lucerne?”
As a child I have many fond memories of singing Christmas songs from the church hymnal, in children’s Christmas pageants, and Christmas caroling led by the booming voice of one of our church leaders, Dave Gregory.
It’s interesting that we think of most Christmas songs as “feel good.” Don’t get me wrong, I still spin my parents’ copy of Bing Crosby on the record player. Reminiscing and hearing the clicks of the needle passing over the dust from time to time.
But Christmas songs – specifically Christian Christmas songs – are not just feel good. They are weapons of war. This may seem odd, but bear with me for a minute.
You see, our souls are at war. The apostle Peter tells us so in I Peter 2:11: “beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which WAGE WAR AGAINST YOUR SOULS (emphasis mine).”
Our souls are always at war in a battle for our souls, and who we will follow. Will we follow Christ or Satan? Whose army will we support?
To win this war of the soul, we need the SOUL WARRIOR, Jesus Christ (Colossians 3:15-4:18). We cannot win this war on our own. The Death Defeater, Jesus Himself, will win the war.
He wins this war because He is not like us sinners because He is the ultimate Warrior. He has defeated sin (I Corinthians 15:55-57). Although we are sinners, He can give us life. He can give us victory.
When we sing these Christmas songs, we are singing about that Warrior and to Him. We sing songs about the One who gives us hope, love, joy, and peace. Hope of eternity, love from a perfect God that’s never ending, joy that can only be found in Him, and peace that is made between us and God.
As we struggle with these things, with obedience, with our souls, we come to church to sing these songs to remind ourselves of something. We sing in merry jubilee about who we are, and Who He is. This singing does not feel good only for emotions, but as a declaration of truth. We sing about the only One who won the War.
We sing about our sin and depravity that only He can overcome. Like the angels, we sing, “Glory to the newborn King, peace on earth, and mercy mild, God and sinners reconciled.” That reconciliation of our sin-cursed soul, only brought to perfection by the perfect, God-Man Jesus Christ. The one who won the war over death itself.
Once we realize who we are, unable to win the war in and of ourselves. But that only He can. He can reconcile us to God, bringing peace to our lives.
Then, we can see that those songs are weapons. Weapons to reassure our hearts and minds that if we are in Christ, He has already declared victory. We stand declaring about God’s work in us that “sin will have no dominion over you (Romans 6:14).”
They are weapons against living in the flesh and living unto God. Weapons reminding us that we have a King who slays all dragons, even The Dragon. We have weapons that are “not fashioned by man.”
So whether it be in your church, your home, or your car, go ahead and sing joyfully, gleefully this Christmas season. Enjoy those songs. But also sing them as weapons. Sing knowing there is a war that needs to be won. A war that has been won. A war that was defeated at the cross by the eternal warrior, Jesus Christ Himself.
Thanks for taking time to read this Maddening Theology post. If you enjoyed this content you can find Pastor Tim’s sermons at www.cornerstoneforestcity.org. You can also join us at 520 Marion St. Browndale, PA 18421 on Sundays at 10 AM. To make following the blog easier you can also register. You can also join us on Facebook at Cornerstone Forest City. Also, don’t forget to download our APP on iTunes or Googleplay.