If you’re stuck at work today, I’m sorry.
If you’re stuck visiting family you’d rather not visit, but don’t want to admit it, you also have my condolences.
By way of a distraction today, I thought I would offer those that needed it something of massive significance to debate about….
The list of the greatest Christmas hymns of all time.
Christmas songs like Jingle Bells or White Christmas are fine, but you know me, I’m a theology nerd. I need some theology in my Christmas music. Which means my list is heavily weighted to songs with substance.
Of course, like anybody else, I’m also a sucker for a big musical buildup. So, that plays into my list as well.
Finally, I kept my list short because, well, it’s just easier to debate a short list.
Anyway, without further ado, here are the unquestioned 5 greatest Christmas hymns of all time in precise order of greatest [insert sarcasm font].
The Top 5 Christmas Hymns of All Time
5. Silent Night
Silent Night may be number five on my list of 5, but there’s no doubt in my mind that this is, without question, one of the most beautiful Christmas songs of all time. Sung by the right person, in the right setting, this one’s a guaranteed tear jerker…in a good way.
4. O Come All Ye Faithful
Full disclosure, I’m pretty biased towards this song. As I mentioned last week, I heard people from across the world spontaneously sing this song in their own language at the Vatican during the Midnight Mass last Christmas Eve and it was nothing short of amazing.
3. O Holy Night
The lyrics to this one are great, but let’s be honest. The best part of this gem comes towards the end with that amazing build up to “Oh night…divine!” Goosebumps. Every. Single. Time. (At least when it’s sung by someone with a serious set of pipes.)
2. Joy To The World
For sheer joy, it’s hard to beat Joy to the World at Christmas time. Whether it’s being sung by a choir with a full orchestra or updated with a dose of rock ‘n roll, this song brings the excitement of the Christmas season like few others. “The Lord is come” and this song doesn’t let you forget it.
1. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
For my money, you don’t get better than Hark! Herald Angels Sing. Why? Because it manages to pack some serious theology into a song everybody can sing, but, more importantly, everybody also loves (or at least they should). That is no easy task, but it’s one Charles Wesley was incredibly gifted at. So, with lyrics like “veiled in flesh the godhead see, hail the incarnate deity; pleased as man with men to dwell, Jesus our Emmanuel” and “born that men no more may die; born to raise the sons of earth; born to give them second birth,” Hark! The Herald Angels Sing is the greatest Christmas hymn of all time.
Well, that’s my list.
While I have no idea how you could possibly disagree with my choices or their order since these sorts of things are clearly objective, I want to hear from you.
What order would you put these songs in?
Did I miss a great song that belongs on the list?
What songs would make your list of the top five?
Let me know in the comments, and if you want to get really creative, let me know who you prefer hearing singing the songs on my list or yours.