The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

From Heaven So High I Come To You

For Christmas Eve

Words: Vom Himmel hoch da komm ich her, by Martin Luther
From Joseph Klug's Gesangsbuch, 1535
Notes and Translations: Notes for Vom Himmel Hoch Da Komm Ich Her

Text based on Luke 2: 1-18

Translation: Rev. J. G. Tasker

Source: "Wesleyan-Methodist Magazine: Being a Continuation of the Arminian Or Methodist Magazine First Publ. by John Wesley" (1883), pp. 956-957.

THE CHILDREN'S CHRISTMAS HYMN.

Luther is said to have written this hymn for his own children;
Dr. Eostlin is of the opinion that he had it sung to them on Christmas Eve.

FROM THE GERMAN OF DR. MARTIN LUTHER BY THE REV. J. G. TASKER.

From Heaven so high I come to you
Bringing glad tidings, good and true,
So full of joy the news I bring,
Of it I must both speak and sing.

To you, a Babe, this holy morn,
Is of a chosen virgin born,
A tender Babe and wondrous fair;
He brings you joy and rapture rare.

The Christ, our God and Lord, is He,
From all distress He'll set you free;
Your Saviour, there's no other One
From sin to save, for sin to atone.

The great salvation He hath brought
Reveals our loving Father's thought:
That all to whom this grace is given
May dwell with God on earth; in heaven.

So let the tokens well be seen:
The swaddling-clothes, the manger mean,
'Tis there you find that Child is lain
Who doth the universe sustain.

Then let us all to praise begin,
And with the shepherds enter in
To see what God to us hath given
In sending His dear Son from heaven.

Mark well, my soul, yon manger-bed;
Who in such cradle lays His head?
Who is this beautiful young Child.
It is the Infant Jesus mild.

Welcome to earth, Thou honoured Ccest,
In Thee the sinner scorned is blest;
My misery Thou hast come to share,
How shall my soul her thanks declare.

Ah ! Lord, Who all things didst create,
How lowly is Thine earthly state!
There Thou dost lie on parched grass,
The manger-food of ox and ass.

Yet were this wide world far more wide.
Did it but gold and jewels hide,
Still were it far too small to be
A narrow cradle, Lord, for Thee.

The velvet and the silk is Thine,
Yet on coarse hay Thou dost recline,
As glorious there, as truly great,
As clad in all Thy Kingly state.

Thus wast Thou pleased to dwell below
That Thou to me this truth might'st show,
That all the world, its pomp, its might,
Is naught accounted in Thy sight.

0! my beloved Jesus, come,
And in my heart prepare Thy homo.
Nor from its inmost shrine remove.
That I may ne'er forget Thy love.

My heart shall then no more be sad,
Hut leap for joy, at all times glad;
That sweetest cradle-song I'll sing
Which celebrates my lowly King.

Glory to God, enthroned on high,
Who sent His only Son to die;
The songs of angels now proclaim
All New-Year's blessings in His name.

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