Joy to the World!
“These things I have spoken to you, that my joy might be in you, and your joy may be full.”1
When someone mentions the song, “Joy to the World”, our minds immediately think of Christmas! However, this song was not originally written as a Christmas carol, instead its words were written in a poem about a hundred years before. The author, Isaac Watts, used Psalm 98:7-9 as an inspiration for the poem.
Isaac Watts was an English minister in the early 1700’s. It is said that he wrote approximately 750 hymns. In addition, he also wrote a book of poems titled, The Psalms of David: Imitated in the language of the New Testament, and applied to the Christian state and worship. The goal was for the reader to see these beautiful Old Testament passages through a New Testament perspective. Watts desired for people to see and experience Jesus as their King.
The last stanza of “Joy to the World” says:
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.2
As we sing the lyrics of “Joy to the World” this season, let us do so with a renewed perspective. Jesus isn’t just a baby that we celebrate at Christmas. He is the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords. Watts wanted us to understand that our King rules with truth and grace, but it is our job to share the wonder of His love with others. People today need to personally experience His love and joy, not only at Christmas, but all year round.
As Jesus was speaking with his disciples in today’s verse, he wanted them to have the joy that can only be found in Him. This is the same joy available to us when we choose to accept Jesus as our King, and we can worship the King and bring “joy to the world” when we share it with those we meet.
Suggested prayer: Dear Lord, thank you for your joy that is available to us all. Satan may try to steal our joy, but in You we can overcome and experience the peace, love, and joy that we so desperately need. Help me share this joy freely with others so they can experience it as well. In Jesus’ precious name we pray, amen.
“Joy to the World”, written by Isaac Watts in 1719.
Today’s Encounter was written by: Crystal B.
All articles on this website are written by
Richard (Dick) Innes unless otherwise stated.