Classic Church Christmas Songs to Sing into the Holiday Season

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Nothing says “Christmas has arrived” like listening to Christmas music. The holiday season is a busy time, but don’t let this Christmas pass you by without listening to classic Christmas carols. We all know and love them, the beautiful church Christmas songs that remind us every year that Jesus Christ is the reason for the season. Songs like “Silent Night”, “O, Come Let Us Adore Him”, and “Angels We Have Heard on High”.

Other wonderful Christmas worship songs like “Mary, Did You Know?”, “Little Drummer Boy”, and “Do You Hear What I Hear?” are very popular church Christmas songs during the Christmas season. What Christmas songs does your church typically sing throughout December?

Start planning your Christmas Eve services now with Christmas Sermon Ideas and pick out your favorite Christmas songs to make the service special. Find out which Christian Christmas songs and Christmas carols we highly recommend singing this Christmas season!

Estimated reading time: 10 minutes

Classic Christmas Songs

According to Time, “Silent Night” (1816) is the most recorded Christmas song ever with nearly 800 recorded versions since 1978. There are so many different versions of each church Christmas song so it’s up to you to determine your favorite. Christmas songs often tell the story and miracle of the birth of Jesus Christ. They are a wonderful reminder to pause and reflect on the humanity of Jesus as well as the sacrifice he made for us all.

Joy to the World! The Lord Is Come

“Joy to the world, the Lord is come
Let Earth receive her King
Let every heart prepare Him room
And Heaven and nature sing”

Hark! The Herald Angels Sing

“Hark! The herald angels sing
‘Glory to the new-born king
Peace on earth and mercy mild
God and sinners reconciled’
Joyful all ye nations rise
Join the triumph of the skies
With angelic host proclaim
“Christ is born in Bethlehem”

The First Noel

“The First Noel the Angels did say
Was to certain poor shepherds in fields as they lay
In fields where they lay keeping their sheep
On a cold winter’s night that was so deep
Noel Noel Noel Noel
Born is the King of Israel!”

In the Bleak Mid Winter

“But only his Mother
In her maiden bliss
Worshiped the beloved
With a kiss
What can I give him?
Poor as I am
If I were a shepherd
I would give a lamb”

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen

“God rest ye merry gentlemen
Let nothing you dismay
Remember Christ our Savior
Was born on Christmas Day”

Angels We Have Heard On High

“Angels we have heard on high
Sweetly singing o’er the plains
And the mountains in reply
Echoing their joyous strains”

Silent Night

“Silent night, holy night
All is calm, all is bright
Round yon Virgin, Mother and Child
Holy Infant so tender and mild
Sleep in heavenly peace”

O Little Town of Bethlehem

“For Christ is born of Mary
And gathered all above
While mortals sleep, the angels keep
Their watch of wondering love”

Angels from the Realms of Glory

“Angels from the realms of glory,
Wing your flight o’er all the earth;
Ye who sang creation’s story
Now proclaim Messiah’s birth.”

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

“O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here,
Until the Son of God appear.”

It Came upon the Midnight Clear

“It came upon the midnight clear,
that glorious song of old,
from angels bending near the earth
to touch their harps of gold:
“Peace on the earth, good will to men,
from heaven’s all-gracious King.”

Away in a Manger

“Away in a manger
No crib for a bed
The little Lord Jesus
Lay down His sweet head

The stars in the sky
Look down where He lay
The little Lord Jesus
Asleep on the hay”

Go Tell It on the Mountain

“Go, tell it on the mountain
Over the hills and everywhere
Go, tell it on the mountain
That Jesus Christ is born

While shepherds kept their watching
O’er silent flocks by night
Behold throughout the heavens
There shone a Holy light”

O Come Let Us Adore Him

“O come all ye faithful
Joyful and triumphant
O come ye, o come ye to Bethlehem
Come and behold Him”

We Three Kings

“We three kings of Orient are;
bearing gifts we traverse afar,
field and fountain, moor and mountain,
following yonder star.”

Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus

“Come, Thou long expected Jesus
Born to set Thy people free;
From our fears and sins release us,
Let us find our rest in Thee.”

O Holy Night

“O Holy night! The stars are brightly shining
It is the night of our dear Savior’s birth
Long lay the world in sin and error pining
‘Til He appears and the soul felt its worth”

What Child Is This

“What child is this who laid to rest
On Mary’s lap is sleeping
Whom angels greet with anthems sweet
While shepherds watch are keeping?

So bring him incense, gold and myrrh
Come peasant king to own him
The King of Kings salvation brings
Let loving hearts enthrone him”

Contemporary Christmas Songs

While classic Christmas songs are beautiful, it’s always nice to welcome in newer contemporary Christmas songs. These songs still highlight the meaning of what Christmas is all about, the birth of Jesus. They have modern instruments and beautiful lyrics that can elevate any Christmas service. Pair any of these contemporary Christian Christmas songs with classic Christmas carols to have a service the whole family can enjoy!

Born Is The King (It’s Christmas) – Hillsong Worship

“Born unto us this day a Savior
Gifted from heaven to a manger
The hope of the world
A light for all mankind
All of the earth rejoice
It’s Christmas time”

Evermore – Phil Wickham

“Oh, that birth forever blessed
When and the chosen Virgin go
By the Holy Ghost conceiving
Bore the Savior of our world”

Mary Did You Know – Pentatonix

“Mary, did you know that your baby boy
Would one day walk on water?
Mary, did you know that your baby boy
Would save our sons and daughters?
Did you know that your baby boy
Has come to make you new?
This child that you delivered, will soon deliver you”

Little Drummer Boy – Lauren Daigle

“Come, they told me pa-rum pum pum pum
Our newborn King to see, pa-rum pum pum pum
Our finest gifts we bring pa-rum pum pum pum
To lay before the King pa-rum pum pum pum”

Do You Hear What I Hear?

“Said the king to the people everywhere
Listen to what I say! (Listen to what I say!)
Pray for peace, people, everywhere
Listen to what I say! (Listen to what I say!)
The Child, the Child sleeping in the night
He will bring us goodness and light”

Seasons – Hillsong Worship

“I can see the promise
I can see the future
You’re the God of seasons
And I’m just in the winter
If all I know of harvest
Is that it’s worth my patience
Then if You’re not done working
God I’m not done waiting”

I Wonder as I Wander – Harry Connick Jr.

“I wonder as I wander out under the sky
That Jesus my Savior did come for to die
For poor on’ry people like you and like I
I wonder as I wander out under the sky”

Emmanuel (God With Us Forever) – Brian and Katie Torwalt

“Before You set the edge of time
Foundations of the earth and sky
You saw it all, You said that it was good
The joy was set before Your eyes
You knew that You would give Your life
You saw it all, You said that it was good”

He Shall Reign Forevermore – Chris Tomlin

“Here within a manger lies
The One who made the starry skies
This baby born for sacrifice
Christ, the Messiah
Into our hopes, into our fears
The Savior of the world appears
The promise of eternal years
Christ, the Messiah”

Here Comes Heaven – Elevation Worship

“Children weep no more
Hope is on the horizon
Weary world behold
Your promised Messiah

Angels let your song begin
Here comes heaven
Christ is born in Bethlehem
Here comes heaven”

His Name Shall Be – Matt Redman

“Oh, can you hear the angels’ song, that rang so sweet and clear
When heaven’s light and music fell, and mercy found us here
Glory in the highest, and on the earth be peace
Glory to God, the angels sing”

Light of the World – Lauren Daigle

“The world waits for a miracle
The heart longs for a little bit of hope
Oh come, oh come, Emmanuel
A child prays for peace on Earth
And she’s calling out from a sea of hurt
Oh come, oh come, Emmanuel”

Gabriel’s Message – Matt Maher

“The angel Gabriel from Heaven came
His wings as drifted snow, His eyes as flame
“All hail” said he “thou lowly maiden Mary
Most highly favored lady”

When Hope Came Down – Kari Jobe

“So this is how it was
A silent night like any other
When heaven sent the one
The one that we will call our savior
And redemption began
In a stable in Bethlehem”

Non-Christian Specific Christmas Songs

Of course, there are hundreds of other classic Christmas songs we hear as the Holiday season approaches. These are songs we hear on the radio and in movies that really help us get into the holiday spirit. Any of these songs could be fun to sing on a Sunday service mixed in with classic Christmas carols. Check out Billboard’s top 100 most popular Christmas songs of all time!

It’s The Most Wonderful Time of the Year – Andy Williams

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year
With the kids jingle belling
And everyone telling you be of good cheer
It’s the most wonderful time of the year”

White Christmas – Elvis Presley

“I’m dreaming of a white Christmas
Just like the ones I used to know
Where the treetops glisten and children listen
To hear sleigh bells in the snow”

Jingle Bell Rock

“Jingle bells swing and jingle bells ring
Snowin’ and blowin’ up bushels of fun
Now the jingle hop has begun”

It’s Beginning to Look a lot Like Christmas

“It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas
Everywhere you go
Take a look at the five and ten, it’s glistening once again
With candy canes and silver lanes that glow”

Silver Bells – Dean Martin

“City sidewalks, busy sidewalks, dressed in holiday style
In the air there’s a feeling of Christmas
Children laughing, people passing, meeting smile after smile
And on every street corner you hear”

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
Had a very shiny nose
And if you ever saw it
You would even say it glows”

We Wish You a Merry Christmas

“We wish you a merry Christmas,
wish you a merry Christmas
We wish you a merry Christmas and a happy new year
Good tidings we bring to you and your kin
We wish you a merry Christmas and a happy new year”

Wonderful Christmastime – Paul McCartney

“The mood is right
The spirit’s up
We’re here tonight
And that’s enough
Simply having a wonderful Christmastime
Simply having a wonderful Christmastime”

I’ll Be Home for Christmas

I’ll be home for Christmas
You can plan on me
Please have snow and mistletoe
And presents by the tree”

Frosty the Snowman

“Frosty the Snowman
Was a jolly happy soul
With a corn cob pipe and a button nose
And two eyes made out of coal”

Winter Wonderland

“Sleigh bells ring, are you listening?
In the lane, snow is glistening
A beautiful sight
We’re happy tonight
Walking in a winter wonderland”

Sleigh Ride

“Just hear those sleigh bells jingling,
Ring ting tingling too
Come on, it’s lovely weather
For a sleigh ride together with you”


Did you see your favorite Christian Christmas song in our list? Turn up the volume and make a fun playlist of all these beautiful Christmas songs this holiday season.

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