Advent Hymns and Songs (151 Traditional and Modern Carols)


The Christmas season is full of festive music like the beloved Advent hymn, O Come, O Come, Emmanuel. Like the biblical stories that tell about the birth of Jesus Christ, the songs of Advent contain messages of love, hope, and peace. Below, readers will find 151 Christian hymns for Advent, but listed first is a quick-reference guide to 10 of the Church’s most beloved songs of the season.

  • Angels We Have Heard On High
  • Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus
  • The First Noel
  • Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
  • Joy to the World!
  • O Come, All Ye Faithful
  • O Come, O Come, Emmanuel
  • O Little Town of Bethlehem
  • Silent Night, Holy Night
  • What Child Is This?
four advent candles
The word “advent’ means “arrival”

Hymns 1-25 Featuring: Angels We Have Heard On High

The music of Christmas that transcends generational and cultural differences are those that reflect the gospel accounts of the incarnation, unite and encourage the Church, and warm the heart with affection for Christ.

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel is a perfect example of such a hymn, though there are dozens of other traditional and modern songs that fit this description, some of which are well-known and others not.

The songs listed below are in alphabetical order. Readers are encouraged to follow the provided links for more information.

1. A Communion Hymn for Christmas
2. A Nativity Prayer
3. A Thousand Candles
4. The Advent of Our God
5. The Advent of Our God at Hand
6. The Advent of our King
7. Angels from the Realms of Glory
8. Angels We Have Heard on High
9. Ave Maria
10. Away in a Manger
11. Benedictus
12. Behold! The Baptist’s Warning Sound
13. The Birthday of a King
14. Blest Be The King Whose Coming
15. Break Forth, O Beauteous Heavenly Light
16. Bright Maker of the Starry Poles
17. Bright Star Carol
18. Celestial Word, To This Our Earth
19. Child of Love
20. Christ is the Worlds True Light
21. Christ Whose Glory Fills the Skies
22. Christian Children Advent Bids You
23. The Church Of God A Kingdom Is
24. Comfort, Comfort Ye My People
25. Come On, Ring Those Bells

Isaiah 9:6 reads, “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” (KJV)

Away In a Manger
Away in a Manger was written in 1882

Hymns 26-50 Featuring: Hark! The Herald Angels Sing

The word “advent” refers to the arrival of a table person, thing, or event. It comes from the Latin word adventus, meaning “arrival,” which is from the verb advenire which combines ad– ” to” and venire– “come.” In the Christian tradition, “Advent” describes the first season of the Christian church year, leading up to Christmas and including the four preceding Sundays.

26. Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus
27. The Coming Of Our God
28. Emmanuel
29. Find Us Ready
30. The First Noel
31. For Unto Us a Child is Born
32. Gabriels Message Does Away
33. Glory Be Bright Builder of the Heavenly Poles
34. Go, Tell It On the Mountain
35. Good Christian Men, Rejoice
36. Great Maker of the Glittering Stars
37. Hail to the Lord’s Anointed
38. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
39. Hark, What a Sound
40. High Word of God
41. Hills of the North
42. Hosanna to the Living Lord
43. How Great Our Joy
44. How Long
45. How Shall I Sing That Majesty
46. Hymn to the Virgin
47. I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day
48. I Saw Three Ships
49. I Wonder as I Wander
50. In a Land By Death O’ershadowed

Ephesians 5:18-19 encourages Christians to be “filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord.” (KJV)

Hark the Herald Angels Sing
Hark! The Herald Angels Sing! first appeared in 1739

Hymns 51-75 Featuring: Joy to the World!

The word “hymn” comes from the Greek word hymnos, meaning “song of praise.” Christians have written and sung Advent hymns since the early days of the Church over 2,000 years ago because of the importance of Christ’s birth to the good news of the gospel and God’s plan for the ages.

51. In the Bleak Midwinter
52. Infant Holy, Infant Lowly
53. Isaiah (O Come)
54. It Came Upon a Midnight Clear
55. Jesus Came — the Heavens Adoring
56. Jesus Is Born
57. Jesus Shall Reign Where’er the Sun
58. Joy to the World!
59. The King Shall Come When Morning Dawns
60. Lift Up Your Heads Ye Mighty Gates
61. The Little Road to Bethlehem
62. Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silent
63. Lo! He Comes, An Infant Stranger
64. Lo! He Cometh, Countless Trumpets
65. Lo! How a Rose E’er Blooming
66. Lo! Now A Thrilling Voice Sounds Forth
67. Lo! The Desert-Depths Are Stirr’d
68. Lord, Her Watch Thy Church Is Keeping
69. Lord of Mercy and of Might
70. The Lord Will Come and Not Be Slow
71. Love Divine All Loves Excelling
72. Love Has Captured the Night
73. Lully, Lulla, Thou Little Tiny Child
74. Make A Way
75. Make Broad The Path

John 1:14 reads, “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.” (KJV)

Hymn writer Isaac Watts
Isaac Watts wrote the lyrics to Joy to the World

Hymns 76-100 Featuring: O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

Aspects of the hymn O Come, O Come, Emmanuel extend to the 8th or 9th century. Church historians believe that composers created the Latin metrical version of the hymn in the 12th century. [2] The hymn has been translated into many languages.

The most well-known in English is John Mason Neale’s 1851 rendition. The tune to the common version originated in the 15th century, and the lyrics originated in the 19th century.

76. Maker of the Starry Sphere
77. Mary’s Magnificat
78. The Mighty Gates of Earth Unbar
79. The Mighty God the Lord Hath Spoken
80. O Adonai
81. O Bright Creator of the Stars
82. O Come, All Ye Faithful
83. O Come, Let Us Adore Him
84. O Come, Redeemer of Mankind
85. O Come, O Come, Emmanuel
86. O Heavenly Word, Eternal Light
87. O Heavenly Word of God on High
88. O Holy Night!
89. O Jesus, Thou Art Standing
90. O Little One Sweet
91. O Little Town of Bethlehem
92. O Lord our God, Arise
93. O North with All Thy Vales of Green
94. O Quickly Come, Dread Judge of All
95. O Thou Redeemer Of Our Race
96. O Saving Victim, Opening Wide
97. O Thou Joyful, O Thou Wonderful
98. O Thou, The Maker of Each Star
99. O Thou, Who Thine Own Father’s Breast
100. O Very God of Very God

Luke 2:7 reads, “And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.” (KJV)

O Come O Come Emmanuel score
1861 version of O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

Hymns 101-125 Featuring: Silent Night, Holy Night

101. O Word, That Goest Forth on High
102. Of the Father’s Love Begotten
103. On Christmas Night
104. On Jordan’s Bank The Baptist’s Cry
105. On Jordan’s Banks, The Herald’s Cry
106. Once He Came in Blessing
107. Once In Royal David’s City
108. Our Day of Joy Is Here Again
109. Our God Approaches From The Skies
110. The Period Is Come, And Lo, To-day
111. Prepare Thy Way, O Zion
112. Redeemer of the Nations, Come
113. The Reign of Mercy
114. Rejoice, All Ye Believers
115. Rejoice! the Lord is King
116. Rejoice, Rejoice, Believers
117. Savior Eternal! Health and Life of the World
118. Savior of the Nations, Come
119. The Shepherds Carol The Swallow and the Bells
120. Silent Night, Holy Night
121. Simeon’s Song
122. Sleepers, Wake! The Watch-Cry Pealeth
123. Slumberers, Wake, The Bridegroom Cometh!
124. Son of God, Eternal Savior
125. Supernal Word, Proceeding From

Isaiah 7:14 reads, “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” (KJV)

Austrian chapel where Silent Night was first performed

Hymns 126-150 Featuring: What Child Is This?

126. Ten Thousand Times Ten Thousand
127. That Day of Wrath and Grief and Shame
128. Thou Art Coming, O My Saviour
129. Thou Didst Leave Thy Throne
130. Thou Whose Almighty Word
131. Thy Father’s Bosom Thou Didst Leave
132. Thy Kingdom Come, O God
133. Thy Kingdom Come! On Bended Knee
134. To Earth Descending, Word Sublime
135. Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day
136. Up! Awake! From Highest Steeple
137. Up! Awake! His Summons Hurried
138. Wake, Awake, The Night Is Flying
139. Wake, O Wake! With Tidings Thrilling
140. Wake! The Startling Watch-Cry Pealeth
141. Watchman, Tell Us Of The Night
142. We Wait for Thy Loving Kindness
143. What Can I Give Him?
144. What Child Is This?
145. When Came In Flesh The Incarnate Word
146. While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks
147. Work For The Day Is Coming
148. The World Is Very Evil
149. The Word Made Flesh
150. Ye Servants Of The Lord With Us
151. Zion’s King Shall Reign Victorious

Jeremiah 23:5 reads, “Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth.” (KJV)

Adoration of the Shepherds
Adoration of the Shepherds by Matthias Stom, c. 1635–1640

7 More Bible Verses for Advent

  • John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
  • Micah 5:2, “But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.”
  • Matthew 2:1-2, “Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.”
  • Luke 2:13-14, “And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”
  • John 8:12, “Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.”
  • Galatians 4:4-5, “But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.”
  • Luke 2:21, “And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called Jesus, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb.”

References:
[1] Source
[2] Source

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