The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

The Word, Who Dwelt Above The Skies

Sunday After Circumcision: Nocturn

Compare: The Word, With God The Father One

Latin: Verbum Quod Ante Secula, The Paris Breviary

Source: Rev. John Chandler, The Hymns of the Primitive Church (London: John W. Parker, 1837), pp. 55-56.

The Word, who dwelt above the skies
    With God before the world began,
Now on the Virgin's bosom lies,
    A helpless new-born child of man.

Already on his sinless head
    The streams of wrath begin to flow ;
Already, on his infant bed,
    The taste of grief the Lord must know.

The lowliest poverty he bears,
    That we may be with wealth supplied ;
He weeps, and by his precious tears
    A guilty world is purified.

A simple dress, a mean abode,
    A life obscure, his glory hide;
Proud man! behold thy lowly God,
    And let the sight destroy thy pride.

O Thou who eamest from the sky
    To be the Lamb for sinners slain,
Thou wilt not leave thy saints to die,
    Nor let such toil be spent in vain.

The Father's name we loudly raise,
    The Virgin-born we all adore,
The Holy Ghost, one God, we praise
    Both now on earth and evermore.


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