The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Behold, the Bridegroom Draweth Nigh

For Christmas

Words: 8th Century Greek, Ἰδοὺ ὁ Νυμφιὸς ἔρχεται ἐν τῷ μέσῳ τῆς νυκτός,
from the Ferial Midnight Office of the Greek Church

Translation by Robert M. Moorsom, 1901
Compare: Behold the Bridegroom Cometh - Brownlie
Behold the Bridegroom Cometh - Moultrie, with notes.

Source: Robert M. Moorsom, Renderings of Church Hymns from Eastern and Western Office Books (1901)

Music: Geronimo;
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer
Meter: 888 886

1. "Behold, the Bridegroom draweth nigh!"
Hear ye the oft-repeated cry?
Go forth into the midnight dim;
for blest are they whom he shall find
with ready heart and watchful mind;
go forth, my soul, to him.

2. "Behold, the Bridegroom cometh by!"
The call is echoed from the sky:
Go forth, ye servants, watch and wait;
the slothful cannot join his train;
no careless one may entrance gain:
awake, my soul, 'tis late.

3. O Holy, Holy, Holy Lord,
we cry to thee with one accord;
to us thy pitying mercy show,
that none may reach the door too late,
when thou shalt enter at the gate
and to thy kingdom go.

4. "Behold, the Bridegroom draweth near!"
The warning falls on every ear:
the night of dread shall come to all:
Then, O my soul, renew thy light,
and trim thy lamp that it burn bright;
soon shall I hear the call.

Editor's Note:

This is one of many hymns inspired by the Parable of the Ten Virgins, Matthew 25:1-13. Others include:

See: Christmas-tide Hymns from the Eastern Churches.

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