“O Holy Night”

Advent is about the coming of Christ into the world—through the miracle and mystery of the incarnation. “O Holy Night,” written in 1843 by Placide Cappeau and translated into English by John Sullivan Dwight in 1855, tells of the meaning of Jesus’ coming into the world and his transforming power for human relationships. And in his name all oppression shall cease. The coming of Christ means the arrival of justice, which begins now and will come in fullness with Jesus’ second coming. This means Christmas—the real meaning of Christmas—should change how we see and relate to our fellow human beings. In the incarnation God restores human dignity.

Here are some words from “O Holy Night” that reflect this:

“Truly He taught us to love one another
His law is love and His gospel is peace
Chains he shall break, for the slave is our brother
And in his name all oppression shall cease
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we
Let all within us praise His holy name.”

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