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Christ’s Nativity. Luke 2. 7-14; Matt. 1. 21; 2. 11

J. Hart   8.7.

1
Let us all, with grateful praises,
Celebrate the happy day,
When the lovely, loving Jesus
First partook of human clay;
When the heavenly host, assembled,
Gazed with wonder from the sky;
Angels joyed, and devils trembled,
Neither fully knowing why.

2
Long had Satan reigned imperious,
Till the woman’s promised Seed,
Born a babe, by birth mysterious,
Came to bruise the serpent’s head.
Crush, dear Babe, his power within us,
Break our chains, and set us free;
Pull down all the bars between us,
Till we fly and cleave to thee.

3
[Shepherds on their flocks attending,
Shepherds, that in night-time watched,
Saw the messenger descending,
From the court of heaven dispatched.
Beams of glory decked his mission,
Bursting through the veil of night;
Fear possessed them at the vision;
Sinners tremble at the light.

4
Dove-like meekness graced his visage;
Joy and love shone round his head;
Soon he cheered them with his message;
Comfort flowed from all he said:
“Fear not, favourites of the Almighty!
Joyful news to you I bring;
You have now, in David’s city,
Born a Saviour, Christ the King.

5
“Go and find the royal stranger
By these signs: A Babe you’ll see,
Weak and lying in a manger,
Wrapped and swaddled; that is he.”
Straight a host of angels glorious
Round the heavenly herald throng,
Uttering in harmonious chorus,
Airs divine; and this the song:

6
“Glory first to God be given
In the highest heights, and then
Peace on earth, proclaimed by heaven –
Peace and great goodwill to men!”
Thus they sang with rapture, kindling
In the shepherds’ hearts a flame,
Joy and wonder sweetly mingling;
All believers feel the same.]

7
Lo, sweet Babe, we fall before thee;
Jesus, thee we all adore;
To thee, kingdom, power, and glory
Be ascribed for evermore.
Glory to our God be given
In the highest heights, and then
Peace on earth brought down from heaven –
Peace and great goodwill to men.