The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Lift Up Your Heads, Ye Gates of Brass

For Advent

Words: James Montgomery, 1843

Music: St. Magnus, MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / XML
Old 137th, MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / XML
Crucis victoria, Fur dein Empfangen
Meter: CM
Ellacombe
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / PDF / XML
Meter: CMD

1. Lift up your heads, ye gates of brass,
ye bars of iron, yield,
and let the King of Glory pass;
the cross is in the field.

2. That banner, brighter than the star
that leads the train of night,
shines on their march, and guides from far
his servants to the fight.

3. A holy war those servants wage;
in that mysterious strife,
the powers of heaven and hell engage
for more than death or life.

4. Ye armies of the living God,
sworn warriors of Christ's host,
where hallowed footsteps never trod
take your appointed post.

5. Though few and small and weak your bands,
strong in your Captain's strength
go to the conquest of all lands;
all must be his at length.

6. The spoils at his victorious feet
you shall rejoice to lay,
and lay yourselves, as trophies meet,
in his great judgment day.

7. Then fear not, faint not, halt not now;
quit you like men, be strong!
to Christ shall all the nations bow,
and sing with you this song.

8. Uplifted are the gates of brass,
the bars of iron yield;
behold the King of Glory pass;
the cross hath won the field!

Sheet Music "Presbyter" by Walter O. Wilkinson, 1895, from Henry Sloane Coffin and Ambrose White Vernon, eds., Hymns of the Kingdom of God. New York: The A. S. Barnes Company, 1910, #278.

Note:

The first verse of this song has themes similar to those found in Psalm 24:

7 Lift up your heads, O you gates; 
       be lifted up, you ancient doors, 
       that the King of glory may come in.

 8 Who is this King of glory? 
       The LORD strong and mighty, 
       the LORD mighty in battle.

 9 Lift up your heads, O you gates; 
       lift them up, you ancient doors, 
       that the King of glory may come in.

 10 Who is he, this King of glory? 
       The LORD AlmightyŚ 
       he is the King of glory. 

See also

Lift Up Your Heads Ye Mighty Gates - Version 1 (Catherine Winkworth translation, alt.)
Lift Up Your Heads Ye Mighty Gates - Version 2 (Catherine Winkworth translation)
Make Broad The Path (George Ratcliffe Woodward)
The Mighty Gates of Earth Unbar (Altered from Mercer's Psalter and Hymn Book)

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