The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

From The Desert-Caverns Rude

For the Nativity of S. John The Baptist

Words: Nunc suis tandem, C. Coffin (1676-1749)
Translation by Rev. W. J. Blew

Source: George Radcliffe Woodward, ed, Songs of Syon (London: Schott & Co., Third Edition, 1908), #254

1. From the desert-caverns rude
Now the new Elias fareth;
Sore he chides the viper-brood,
And for Christ a way prepareth:
Lo the Judge is hastening hither,
Purging with his fan the floor;
Soon in fire the chaff shall wither,
While the wheat his barns shall store.

2. Christ is coming; mount and hill,
Bending low your heads, adore him!
Vales arise, your hollows fill,
Crooked ways, grow straight before him!
High fore-runner, lightís true herald,
Rouse the slumberers on thy path,
Lest we perish, sloth imperillíd,
In the Lambís avenging wrath.

3. Highest praise to God the Lord,
To the Fatherís endless merit;
To the sole-begotten Word,
Who all glory cloth inherit;
Praise and honour without ending
Be to him, the Spirit of love,
Forth the Christian champion sending,
Armíd with unction from above.

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