Two brief comments this evening:
1. As part of my personal crusade to “Keep the Incarnation in Christmas,” I want to reiterate, contra every choral society in the English-speaking world, that Handel’s “Messiah” is an Easter oratorio. Furthermore, the “Halelujah” chorus from that oratorio is a celebration of THE RESURRECTION, not the Nativity. The words are from Revelation, not Luke. It’s exciting music. I love it. But it ain’t for Christmas.
2. Some mischevious persons change the words of “Hark! the Herald Angels Sing,” because their tender ears can’t stand to hear masculine pronouns used in an inclusive manner. “Pleased as man with man to dwell” is what Charles Wesley wrote, and that’s what we should sing. If you are “uncomfortable” with standard English, and you like gender-bending music, my advice is to write your own damn song.
Aside from eliminating the play on words with the double meaning of “man” (since when did liberals favor artistic censorship?), it’s an attempt to fly from the meaning of the Incarnation. “Pleased with us in flesh to dwell” is less theologically robust and it puts the emphasis on us, the worshippers.
Anyone else have Christmas hymn atrocities against which they would like to rail?