His poetry brought forth the spiritual passion that made hymn singing a deep religious experience. He wrote about sixty theological and philosophical books and about hymns. However, young Watts had been complaining about the hymn singing in church since he was eighteen years old. The next Sunday morning his father shared the hymn with the church. They liked it so much that Isaac was asked to write another.
The legacy was begun and so continued the request for the next Sundays. Watts did not snub the metrical hymns — he just wanted them to be filled with more enthusiasm. In , Watts published his first volume of original hymns and sacred poems. His next hymnal was Hymns and Spiritual Songs and was published in Many of the Dissenters did not approve of the hymnal.
They believed only Psalms and not hymns should be sung in church. This led Watts to adapt the Psalms to Christian worship services.
It was his goal to give the Psalms a New Testament meaning and mode. Where he speaks of the pardon of sin through the mercies of God, I have added the merits of a Savior. Where he talks of sacrifice of Christ, the Lamb of God…Where he promises abundance of wealth, honor, and long life, I have changed some of these typical blessings for grace, glory, and life eternal, which are brought to light by the gospel, and promised in the New Testament.
[Verse 1] Joy to the world, the Lord has come. Let earth receive her King · Let every heart prepare Him room. And heaven and nature sing, and heaven and. "Joy to the World" is a popular Christmas carol with words by Isaac Watts. As of the late 20th century, "Joy to the World" was the most-published Christmas hymn .
Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all the earth; make a loud noise, and rejoice, and sing praise. Let the floods clap their hands; let the hills be joyful together before the Lord; for He cometh to judge the earth, with righteousness shall He judge the world, and the people with equity. The rest of the verses could be sung at anytime of the year. Mary and Joseph, the shepherds, the wise men, and the manger are not mentioned in the hymn, but who could ever say this carol is not one of the greatest carols we have today?
His plans were to stay only a few weeks but spent the next thirty-six years as a guest there. While he was staying at the Abney estate, he dedicated Divine and Moral Songs for Children to their children. In , he suffered a stroke, which left him all but bedridden during his final years. It is interesting to note that Watts never married. His sickness and unpleasant appearance caused his personal life to suffer. He was five feet tall, pale, skinny, and he had an oversized head.
All of the pictures of him show him in a large gown with large folds. This is probably an effort by the artists to downplay his less than pleasing appearance.
Elizabeth Singer, an avid reader of his book Hymns and Spiritual Songs thought Isaac Watts was her soulmate even though she only knew him through his writings. A meeting was arranged. When she saw his appearance, she refused his marriage proposal.
This was as close as he ever came to being married. The business of a Christian is to do the will of God. If God should raise me up again, and use me to save a soul, that will be worth living for. If He has no more service for me, I can say, through grace, I am ready; I could without alarm if God please, lay back my head on my pillow and die this afternoon or night. My sins are all pardoned through the blood of Christ. As an adult, he worked in a dry goods store and a bank in Savannah, Georgia.
His strong interest in music led him to study with Frederick L. The paraphrase is Watts' Christological interpretation.
Consequently, he does not emphasize with equal weight the various themes of Psalm In stanzas 1 and 2 Watts writes of heaven and earth rejoicing at the coming of the King. An interlude that depends more on Watts' interpretation than the psalm text, stanza 3 speaks of Christ's blessings extending victoriously over the realm of sin. The cheerful repetition of the non-psalm phrase "far as the curse is found" has caused this stanza to be omitted from some hymnals. But the line makes joyful sense when understood from the New Testament eyes through which Watts interprets the psalm.
Stanza 4 celebrates Christ's rule over the nations. Watts' preface says the verses ".. This tune has the first four notes in common with the chorus Lift up your heads from Messiah premiered , and the third line recalls the arioso Comfort ye from the same oratorio, but this resemblance is dismissed as 'chance resemblance' by Handel scholars today. The text appears thus in The Psalms of David: He comes to make his Blessings flow Far as the Curse is found.
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This article is about the Christmas carol. For other uses, see Joy to the World disambiguation. Joy to the World. Top 20 Christmas hymns cited at Hymnary.