Carol XIII. Good Tidings of Great Joy
Christ the Lord Was Born Today
Music: Easter Hymn
Source: Christmas Carols, or Sacred Songs, Suited to the Festival of our Lord's Nativity (London: John William Parker, 1833), pp. 64-67.
GOOD TIDINGS OF GREAT JOY.
BY ALTERNATE COMPANIES.
Christ the Lord was born to-day, Hallelujah,
Rise and sing our festal lay, Hallelujah,
Rise, and with the cherubim, Hallelujah,
Sing to God our Christmas hymn, Hallelujah.
Cause more fruitful to employ, Hallelujah,
Heart and voice on hymn of joy, Hallelujah,
Than is Christ the Saviour's birth, Hallelujah,
Never blest the sons of earth. Hallelujah.
As to those by night who stray
Darkling from their home away,
Is the morning's day-spring bright,
Guiding their lost steps aright:—
As to seamen tempest-tost,
Starlight hid and compass lost,
Is the orient morning breeze,
Cheerful light and tranquil seas :—
As to them whom winter's reign
Long has bound with polar chain,
Is with rapture seen and heard
Vernal bloom and vernal bird :—
As to those, who heartless pine,
Doom'd to labour and the mine,
Is the fresh'ning gale to feel
O'er their languid senses steal:—
As to him, whom sickness wears,
Pains by day and nightly fears,
Is the breath of health that blows
Heart's delight and sweet repose :—
As to them, who long have past
Fainting through the thirsty waste,
Far amid the sands appear
Elim's palms and water clear :—
As to those who hard bestead
Hunger for their daily bread,
Were the key that should unfold
India's pearls and Ophir's gold: —
As the joy these founts convey,
Yea, a greater joy than they,
Greater than from all in one,
Flows from our salvation's Sun.
Sun of Goodness, Prince of Peace,
Thou, the bondman's sole release,
Thou, who to the soul dost bring
Calm for storms, for winter spring;
Thou, who canst a table dress
In the barren wilderness,
Author to the poor of wealth,
To the sick dispensing health :
Thus to Thee we pour the lay,
On thy happy natal day :
Thus to God our Christmas hymn
Chant we with the cherubim.
Sheet Music from Source: Christmas Carols, or Sacred Songs, Suited to the Festival of our Lord's Nativity (London: John William Parker, 1833), pp. 66-67.
Also found in A Selection of Carols, Pieces, and Anthems, Suitable for Christmas. (London: W. Kent and Co.; Penzance: F. Rodda, ca. 1872), with the first two verses and the last two verses.