PMT 2014-155 by Isaac Arthur of Blue Banner Media
[Note: This (partially-cited) article is reposted from the November 29, 2011 Blue Banner Media blogsite. It is an excellent article showing the inherent hope-filled expectations in many of our traditional Christmas hymns. The postmillennial outlook in these beloved hymns is overlooked by most Christians who sing them today. But since this is Christmas season, I thought it might be helpful to point my readers to this article. I will cite only the opening of the article, then provide a hyperlink to re-direct you to the full article. I hope you will read the whole article. Then sing these Christmas carols with greater understanding.]
R.J. Rushdoony, in his book Institutes of Biblical Law: Volume 1 points out that, “The joyful news of the birth of Christ is the restoration of man to his original calling with the assurance of victory. This has long been celebrated in Christmas carols… The cultural mandate [i.e. fulfilling the Dominion Mandate (Genesis 1:26-28) and the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-20)] and postmillennialism is either explicit or implicit in Christmas carols.”
Saving Freedom (by Sen. Jim DeMint)
(Former) Senator DeMint’s firsthand account of the unsettling
socialist shift—behind-the-scenes actions in Congress
that are changing the character of our nation.
See more study materials at: www.KennethGentry.com
Before we move on, we must establish what postmillennialism is. It is a particular view of eschatology (end times) that is defined well by Andrew Sandlin in his book, A Postmillennial Primer: “postmillennialism, rather, derives from those passages [in Scripture] that promise (1) a great extended era of earthly righteousness, peace, and prosperity; (2) the incremental advancement of God’s and Christ’s kingdom in human history during the interadvental era (the period between the first and second Advents); and (3) the unique and potent presence of God accompanying and energizing his covenant people… postmillennialists are not obsessed with the precise timing of the millennium in relation to the second Advent, but are concerned with Christ’s advancing kingdom in time, history, and eternity.”
Rushdoony shows this through several carols, particularly in Isaac Watts’ great hymn/carol “Joy to the World”:
Joy to the world, the Lord is come,
Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare Him room,
And heaven and nature sing.
No more let sins and sorrows grow,
Nor thorns infest the ground;
He comes to make His blessings flow,
Far as the curse is found.
He rules the world with truth and grace,
And makes the nations prove,
The glories of His righteousness,
And wonders of His love.
What a wonderful song that speaks of the victory brought into the world through the birth of Christ – salvation to be given to the elect of the world by the grace of God through the person and work of Jesus Christ, whose birth we celebrate on December 25. Also, through that regeneration of man by grace through faith, we, along with all creation are sanctified, redeemed and brought into conformity with the righteous law of Christ, who was Himself the embodiment of the law of God; the “way, the truth and the light”, the righteousness of God imputed to us. The Christian religion is a faith of ultimate victory, where the very gates of hell cannot prevail against Christ and His chosen people (Matt. 16:18). This we see clearly in the Advent season, that, though Christ is a mere baby lying in a manger, helpless and weak, (a picture of how it is with the people of God often, infants in the hands of a gracious Lord) yet, in that small child there is the power of God unto salvation and redemption, and that weakness, in the child Immanuel and in the church, was never impotence. God is sovereign and omnipotent, and He is providentially in control of all things.
To continue reading this article as you sing the victory of Christ: http://bluebannermedia.com/the-postmillennial-character-of-christmas-carols/