Scripture Verse

There were…shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. Luke 2:8–10


Horace L. Hastings (1831–1899)

Words & Mu­sic: Pos­sib­ly by Hor­ace L. Hast­ings, 1881. Ap­peared in his Songs of Pil­grim­age, se­cond ed­it­ion (Bos­ton, Mas­sa­chu­setts: Scrip­tu­ral Tract Re­po­si­to­ry, 1888), num­ber 861. (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tune:


As the world around was sleep­ing,
In the calm and si­lent night;
While the shep­herds watch were keep­ing
Came an an­gel robed in light.

Gazing on his match­less splen­dor,
They were trou­bled and dis­mayed;
But in ac­cents kind and ten­der,
Soon He said, Be not afraid.

Lo! to you I bring good tid­ings,
Words of peace to all your race;
For in Beth­le­hem abid­ing
Now is born the Prince of Grace.

Would you know the roy­al Stran­ger?
By this sign you may be sure:
Ye shall find Him in a man­ger,
Wrapped in swad-dling gar­ments poor.

Hark! Hea­ven’s hosts take up the sto­ry,
Praising God o’er Beth­le­hem’s plain;
Glory in the high­est, glo­ry;
Peace on earth, good will to men.

We would join the rap­tu­rous sto­ry,
Swell the an­gels’ lof­ty strain,
Glory in the high­est, glo­ry;
Worthy is the Lamb once slain.

Shepherds Abiding in the Fields
Carl H. Bloch (1834–1890)