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O let my soul on Thee repose;
If in the night I sleepless lie,
Praise God, from whom all blessings flow,
Bishop Thomas Ken
THE INCARNATION OF CHRIST
For Thou wert born of woman! Thou didst come,
And not by thunders strewtt
Was Thy tempestuous road; Nor indignation burn'd before Thee on Thy way.
But Thee, a soft and naked child,
Thy mother undefiled
In the rude manger laid to rest
From off her virgin breast.
The Heavens were not commanded to prepare
A gorgeous canopy of golden air;
Nor stoop'd their lamps th' enthroned fires on high:
A single silent star
Came wand'ring from afar, Gliding uncheck'd and calm along the liquid sky,
The Eastern sages leading on
As at a kingly throne,
To lay their gold and odours sweet
Before Thy infant feet.
From all the cherub choirs
And seraph's burning lyres PourM through the host of Heaven the charmed clouds along.
One angel troop the strain began,
Of all the race of man
By simple shepherds heard alone,
That soft Hosanna tone.
H. H. Milman
The Holy Son of God most high,
Quit the sweet pleasure of the sky,
His robes of light He laid aside,
And the frail state of mortal tried,
The Son of God thus man became,
And by their second birth regain
AN HYMN ON THE NA TIVITY OF
I sing the birth was born to night,
The angels so did sound it.
Yet search'd, and true they found it.
The Son of God, th' Eternal King,
And freed the soul from danger;
Was now laid in a manger.
The Father's wisdom will'd it so,
Both wills were in one stature:
And took on Him our nature.
What comfort by Him do we win,
To make us heirs of glory!
Can man forget this story?
THE BIRTH OF CHRIST
The moon is hid ; the night is still;
The Christmas bells from hill to hill
Four voices of four hamlets round,
Were shut between me and the sound.
Each voice four changes on the wind, That now dilate, and now decrease, Peace and goodwill, goodwill and peace,
Peace and goodwill, to all mankind.
Rise, happy morn ! rise, holy morn!
The light that shone when hope was born.
Gloomy night embraced the place
Where the noble Infant lay;
In spite of darkness it was day.