Tuesday, 15 December 2020
Title: Joy To The World
By: Pastor Isaac Yim

Psalm 98:4-9, Psalm 96:11-12, Genesis 3:17-18

Joy to the World
Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth (Psalm 98:4)
Words by Isaac Watts, 1719, paraphrase of Psalm 98
Music by Lowell Mason, 1848, based on G.F. Handel

1. Joy to the world, the Lord is come!
Let earth receive her King!
Let ev’ry heart prepare Him room,
and heav’n and nature sing,
and heav’n and nature sing,
and heav’n, and heav’n and nature sing.

2. 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.

3. No more let sins and sorrows 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.

4. 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.

“Joy to the World” becomes what it is today, due to the efforts of three people. It started with a poet named Isaac Watts (1674-1748). He was inspired by Psalm 98, and he paraphrased the entire Psalm (The Psalms of David, Imitated in the Language of the New Testament 1719). The first stanza was taken from this paraphrased of Psalm 98:4-9. Psalm 98 talks more about the second coming of Christ much more than the first coming.

If you look at Psalm 98, stanza three doesn’t seem to fit in. This is an exception. The writer took this stanza from Genesis 3:17. This verse refers to God’s prohibition for Adam and Eve to eat of the fruit from the tree of good and evil. The “curse” is a direct reference from here. “Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life” (KJV).

The second person is the German musician by the name of George Frederic Handel, who was a contemporary of Isaac Watts, and was living in England. He is best known for his “Handel’s Messiah”.

The third person making this Christmas Carol, “Joy to the World”, is Lowell Mason (1792-1872). Isaac Watts wrote the words and George Frederic Handel put them to his music of “Handel’s Messiah”. Lowell Mason combined them into what we have today as “Joy to the World”. How wonderful that God took a British, a German and an American to respond to Psalm 98 in such a beautiful song of praise that we sing to Jesus, who brough JOY to the world.

The angel of the Lord declared to the shepherds, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord” (Luke2:10-11 ESV). This is good news for all the people of the world, then and now!

Well, what’s so good about the announcement of this news at Christmas? Why sing this carol with such zest and exuberance? Watts answers this question in the third stanza, where he declares that Jesus has come to take away the curse of human sin and rebellion, through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, bringing us the blessings as “far as the curse is found.”

Jesus is the reason for the season. Joy to the World, the Lord is come! Let the earth receive her King! Let every heart prepare Him room. Christmas reminds us that God has given us the most precious gift of His Son, Jesus Christ. For many of us who have made room for Jesus, we experience the joy of sin being forgiven, the power to live in the freedom of the Lord and the assurance of eternal life.

During this Christmas season, as you write in your WhatsApp or other media, may we be angels proclaiming the Good News of the birth of Jesus, the JOY OF THE WORLD, by quoting Luke 2:10-11 at the end of your conversation or mail.

Prayer for Today

Thank you, Jesus, real Christmas is having You in my heart as Lord and Saviour. Help me to treasure this precious gift and give me the boldness and urgency to share Jesus – the Joy of the World. In Jesus’ Name. Amen. 

每日灵粮
星期二, 2020年12月15日
标题:普世欢腾
作者:严以撒牧师
翻译:陈晓佩姐妹

诗篇98:4-9,诗篇96:11-12,创世记3:17-18

普世欢腾
全地都要向耶和华欢乐;要发起大声,欢呼歌颂!(诗篇98:4)
词:以撒•华滋 (Isaac Watts),1719,诗篇98篇的释义
编:罗威尔•梅森 (Lowell Mason),1848,曲子来自乔治.弗里德里希.亨德尔 (George F. Handel)

1.普世欢腾!救主下降,
大地接她君王;
惟愿众心预备地方,
诸天万物歌唱,
诸天万物歌唱,
诸天,诸天万物歌唱。

2.普世欢腾!主治万方,
万民首当颂赞;
沃野洪涛山石平原,
响应歌声嘹亮,
响应歌声嘹亮,
响应,响应歌声嘹亮。

3.罪恶忧伤,不容再长
世途荆棘消亡;
化诅为恩,永远弗届,
到处主泽流长,
到处主泽流长,
到处,到处主泽流长。

4.主藉真理恩治万方,
要使万邦证明,
上主公义,无限荣光,
主爱奇妙莫名,
主爱奇妙莫名,
主爱,主爱奇妙莫名。

“普世欢腾” 成为今天著名的圣诞颂歌是基于三个人的努力。它始于一位名叫以撒•华滋 (Isaac Watts,1674-1748)的诗人。他受到诗篇98篇的启发,解述了整首诗篇(大卫的诗篇,模拟新约圣经1719年的语言)。第一节节选自诗篇98:4-9的释义。与基督第一次降临相比,诗篇98篇更多地讲述祂的第二次降临。

如果您看诗篇98,(颂歌的)第三节似乎不符,这是个例外。作者取之于创世记3:17。这经节提到上帝禁止亚当和夏娃吃善恶树上的果子。这个 “诅咒” 是从这里直接引出的。“你不可吃的那树上的果子,地必为你的缘故受咒诅,你必终身劳苦才能从地里得吃的。”(和合本)

第二个人是德国音乐家乔治•弗里德里希•亨德尔(George Frederic Handel),一位和以撒•华滋 (Isaac Watts)同时代的人,住在英国。他以他的 “亨德尔的弥赛亚颂”(Handel’s Messiah)而著名。

制作这首圣诞颂歌,“普世欢腾”(Joy to the World),的第三个人是罗威尔•梅森(Lowell Mason,1792-1872)。以撒•华滋 (Isaac Watts)作词而乔治•弗里德里希•亨德尔 (George F. Handel)把词写进他的曲子 “亨德尔的弥赛亚颂”(Handel’s Messiah)中。罗威尔•梅森将它们组合,成了今天的 “普世欢腾”(Joy To The World)。何等奇妙,上帝使用了一位英国人、一位德国人和一位美国人以一首优美的赞美诗歌来回应诗篇98篇,让我们歌颂带喜乐到世上的耶稣。

主的使者向牧羊人宣告:“不要惧怕!我报给你们大喜的信息,是关乎万民的;因今天在大卫的城里,为你们生了救主,就是主基督。”(路加福音2:10-11 和合本)这对当时和现在的世界万民来说都是个好消息!

那么,圣诞节宣布这个消息有什么好处呢?为什么要如此热情洋溢地唱这首颂歌呢?华滋在颂歌的第三节回答了这个问题,他宣告耶稣降临是要除去人类因罪孽和叛逆的咒诅,通过耶稣基督的死和复活带给我们祝福,祂的恩泽无所不及,永远流长。

耶稣是这佳节的原因。普世欢腾,救主已降临!让大地接受她的君王吧!让众人的心都为祂预备地方。圣诞节提醒我们,上帝给了我们祂最宝贵的礼物,祂的儿子,耶稣基督。对于我们已预备了地方给耶稣的,我们经历罪得着赦免的喜乐,有力量在主的自由里活着并有着永生的确据。

在这个圣诞佳节,当您在WhatsApp或其他媒体书写时,愿我们作宣告普世欢腾、耶稣降生的好消息的使者,在您的交谈或邮件的结尾引述路加福音2:10-11。

今日祷告
谢谢祢,耶稣,真正的圣诞节是有祢在我心中为主宰和救主。帮助我珍惜这份宝贵的礼物,并赐我勇气和迫切感去分享耶稣—全世界所有人的喜乐。奉耶稣的名。阿们。

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