And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men!” Luke 2:13-14
Hark! The herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King; peace on earth, and mercy mild; God and sinners reconciled.” Joyful, all ye nations, rise, join the triumph of the skies; with angelic hosts proclaim, “Christ is born in Bethlehem!”
Hark! The Herald Angels Sing is about the incarnation based on the text of Luke 2—the story of the angels appearing to the shepherds. Rather than focusing on the Authorized Version’s “on earth peace, good will toward men,” the writer of the hymn, Charles Wesley, focused on what the incarnation really meant to people like himself: “God and sinners reconciled.” Wesley had been involved in the Christian “religion” all his life but only experienced a true conversion to Christ by faith at age 29 in 1738. He wrote this theologically deep hymn just one year after his conversion.
Don’t let Charles Wesley’s story be yours—a knowledge of Christianity without knowing Christ. This Christmas make certain you have been reconciled to God through faith in His incarnate Son.
Luke 2 – Skip Heitzig