Joy to the World (chords, melody with tabs and arrangement)

Last updated on February 8th, 2024


Joy to the World is a popular Christmas carol written by Isaac Watts to the tune “Antioch” by George Frideric Handel. In this post, we’ll cover the guitar chords for this song, sheet music for the melody including tabs, and finally look at a fingerstyle guitar arrangement.

Grab your guitar and let’s get started!


How to read the guitar chord charts

To clarify how to read the chord charts, the top horizontal line represents the high E string and the bottom horizontal line represents the low E string. The vertical lines separate each fret. The numbers in the blue dots tell you which fingers to use on the fretting hand. 

For example, on the G Major chord, you use the:

  • 2nd finger on the 6th string, 3rd fret
  • 1st finger on the 5th string, 2nd fret
  • 3rd finger on the 2nd string, 3rd fret
  • 4th finger on the 1st string, 3rd fret
  • Circles represent open strings
  • On some other chords, X means to avoid the string

You can check this link for more on how to read guitar notation symbols.

Joy to the World guitar chords

In the key of G Major, the basic chords for Joy to the World are G Major, D Major, C Major, D 7, and G/D. You can click on the chords with links to learn different ways of playing that chord.

Try the following chords one at a time until you feel comfortable switching between them. These chords will be written above the melody in the next section.

Joy to the world guitar chords

Here are some other resources on chords:

Joy to the World guitar tabs

For the sheet music below, keep in mind that the chords and melody are meant to be played as separate parts. We’ll look at how to connect these parts later in the arrangement section of this post.

Note that when playing the chords part, continue playing the same chord when switching to a measure that doesn’t show one. For example, you would play G Major for the first two measures.

You can refer to this simple guide to understanding music symbols if needed.

By the way, you can get all the PDFs of this song below.


Joy to the World guitar tabs and chords


You can also try the finger-style guitar arrangement (melody with chords) after the lyrics below.

Joy to the World lyrics

Verse 1:
Joy to the world, the Lord is come!
Let earth receive her King;
let ev’ry heart prepare him room
and heav’n and nature sing,
and heav’n and nature sing,
and heav’n, and heav’n and nature sing.

Verse 2:
Joy to the earth, the Savior reigns!
Let men their songs employ,
while fields and floods, rocks, hills, and plains,
repeat the sounding joy,
repeat the sounding joy,
repeat, repeat the sounding joy.

Verse 3:
No more let sins and sorrows grow
nor thorns infest the ground;
he comes to make his blessings flow
far as the curse is found,
far as the curse is found,
far as, far as the curse is found.

Verse 4:
He rules the world with truth and grace
and makes the nations prove
the glories of his righteousness
and wonders of his love,
and wonders of his love,
and wonders, wonders of his love.

Reference: Joy to the World. Hymnary.org

Joy to the World guitar arrangement

In this section, we are essentially connecting the melody and chords together using a finger-style method of playing. If needed, check out this post to learn how to finger pick on guitar.

The numbers next to some notes on the top staff indicate which fingers to use on the fretting hand.


Joy to the World guitar arrangement

If you like this style of playing, you can check out this post to learn how to connect a melody and chords on guitar.

Get the free guitar practice guide here!

Want to learn more songs? Check out the sheet music with guitar tabs resource on this site.

All the best,
JG Music Lessons

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