Most, if not all, of us know the beautiful Christmas hymn, ‘’O Holy Night.’’ The music for O Holy Night was written by Adolph Charles Adam, a French composer. Ironically, while the lyrics came from the French poem, “Minuit, chrétiens” (Midnight, Christians), written by the poet Placide Cappeau (1808-1877), it was frowned upon by church authorities who denounced it for poor taste and ‘’total absence of the spirit of religion.’’
In the first stanza we are taken back in time, to the moment of the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ:
O holy night! The stars are brightly shining,
It is the night of our dear Saviour’s birth.
Long lay the world in sin and error pining,
Till He appear’d and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices,
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.
Fall on your knees! O hear the angel voices!
O night divine, O night when Christ was born;
O night divine, O night, O night Divine.
The world lay ‘’in sin and error pining.’’ The word pining refers to the wasting away of the human spirit as it grieves and endures pain. The world was a place of darkness, despair and hopelessness, that is ‘’till he appeared.’’ When Christ was born everything changed. It was on that Holy Night that God gave to us His Son, the Messiah, to offer hope and peace to all that would believe in Him.
In Philippians 2:5–11 we discover why the night on which Jesus was born was a holy night.