Christmas Music – Sacred

A world without music would be a world in black and white. With all the color removed, it just wouldn’t be as beautiful as it was meant to be. Music is so much a part of this season of the year that I thought it would be worth a few posts to talk about the music that my family listens to most at Christmas time.

I’m certain you’ll find some items here that you are already well-acquainted with. Perhaps there will be some other items that are new to you or that you had forgotten about and are glad to be reminded of. So for what it’s worth, here it goes.

Each album cover links to an page where you can order or download the music. I will break this into three sections: sacred, traditional, and pop. These categories overlap somewhat, but hopefully this division will make sense to you by the time I’m done. Today’s post will focus on sacred music. The main criterion for being included on this list is the music’s ability to evoke worship. I will be interested to hear from you what you would have included in this list.

Steven Curtis Chapman – “The Music of Christmas”

I’ve been listening to this album every Christmas since college. For me, the best songs are “O Come, O Come Emmanuel” and “Our God Is with Us”—two songs that have to be listened to together. Another favorite is “Precious Promise.” Also, be sure to listen to the “Silent Night/Away In A Manger/O Holy Night” medley.

Andrew Peterson – “Behold the Lamb of God”

If you haven’t seen Andrew Peterson perform this album live, then you need to do so. This album is a story of expectation and fulfillment. It’s the story of the Bible, and it is glorious.

Sojourn – “Advent Songs”

This is a new favorite in our family. It comes from Mike Cosper and the worship leaders at Sojourn Community Church here in Louisville, Kentucky. The album offers new spins on old favorites. By far, my favorite song on here is the first one. It’s the best new version of “Joy to the World” that I have ever heard.

Sovereign Grace Music – “Savior”

This album offers a whole new set of advent songs. Because the tunes are new and don’t evoke holiday associations, we like to listen to these songs year-round.

Take 6 – “He Is Christmas”

“Amen” and “Sweet Little Jesus Boy” are worth the price of the album. Also, their version of “Hark, the Herald Angels Sing” is probably my favorite.


London Philharmonic Orchestra & Chorus – “Hallelujah Chorus” – This may be the most worshipful song of them all. I can hardly make it through this song with dry eyes. “And he shall reign forever and ever!”

Red Mountain Church – “Come, Thou Long Expected Jesus”

Michael W. Smith – “Welcome to Our World”

Josh Groban – Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring

9 Responses to Christmas Music – Sacred

  1. RD December 1, 2010 at 1:39 pm #

    I’m at the office and can’t recall the album titles, but some of my alltime fav sacred Christmas music offerings are from:

    Sandi Patty, Point of Grace, Amy Grant (all 100 of her Christmas records), King’s College Chorus, Robert Shaw Chorale, Phil Keaggy, Steve Green, Mormon Tabernacle Choir (yes, I love those LDS harmonies)

  2. Matt Privett December 1, 2010 at 3:35 pm #

    Did you really just make a Take 6 reference? Bravo!

  3. Matt Privett December 1, 2010 at 3:45 pm #

    By the way, I would add Chris Tomlin’s “Glory in the Highest” to the list.

  4. RD December 1, 2010 at 3:58 pm #

    I should have included The Priests in my earlier list. And the St.Paul’s Cathedral Boys Choir.

  5. MRS December 2, 2010 at 9:40 am #

    Yuck on all the CCM – but a heavy round of English choral music always does the trick.

  6. BClark December 3, 2010 at 11:43 am #

    Third Day has a great Christmas album. I wear it out every year.

  7. Michael Templin December 4, 2010 at 11:47 pm #

    Hey Dr. Burk

    Check out King’s College, Cambridge: There Christmas music is glorious.

    Also if you can find Notre Dame’s (Paris), it is also excellent.

    And I agree with BClark..Third Day is awesome

  8. Roger Fink December 6, 2010 at 12:41 pm #

    I love the soundtrack for the Living Christmas Tree from First Church, DeRidder. The one with your dad singing as one of the three wise men!

  9. Denny Burk December 6, 2010 at 1:05 pm #

    Thanks for the comment, Roger. I shouldn’t have left that one off!

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