Scripture Verse

Unto you that fear My name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in His wings. Malachi 4:2


Paul Gerhardt

Words: Paul Ger­hardt (Schaut! Schaut! Was Ist für Wun­der Dar?). Pub­lished in Jo­hann G. Ebe­ling’s Geist­liche An­dacht­en, Fünff­te Dut­zet, 1667, num­ber 55. Trans­lat­ed from Ger­man to Eng­lish by John Kel­ly, Paul Ger­hardt’s Spi­ri­tu­al Songs (Lon­don: Al­ex­an­der Stra­han, 1867), pages 14–17.

Music: Light of the Na­tions Got­tlob Sie­gert, 1822 (🔊 pdf nwc).

If you know where to get a good pic­ture of Kel­ly or Sie­gert (head & shoul­ders, at least 200×300 pix­els),


Behold! be­hold! what won­der’s here!
The gloomy night turns bright and clear,
A bril­liant light dis­pels the shade,
The stars be­fore it pale and fade.

A won­drous light it is, I trow,
And not the an­cient sun shines now,
For, con­tra­ry to na­ture, night
Is turned by it to day so bright.

What means He to an­nounce to us,
Who na­ture’s course can al­ter thus?
A migh­ty work de­signed must be
When such a migh­ty sign we see.

To us vouch­saf­èd can it be,
The Sun of Right­eous­ness to see,
The Star from Ja­cob’s stem so bright,
The wo­man’s seed, the Gen­tiles’ light?

’Tis even so—for from the sky
Heav’n’s hosts with joy­ful tidings hie,
That He is born in Beth­l’hem’s stall,
Who Sav­ior is and Lord of all!

Oh bless­ed­ness! the good­ly throng
Of saint­ed fa­thers wait­ed long
To see this day, with hope de­ferred,
As we may learn from God’s own Word.

Behold! there in yon gloomy stall
He lies who rul­eth over all;
Where once their food the cat­tle sought,
The vir­gin’s child for rest is brought.

Oh, child of Ad­am! pon­der well,
And stum­ble not at what I tell,
He who ap­pears in this low state
For us is, and aye shall be great.

In mor­tal flesh we Him be­hold,
Who all things made and doth up­hold,
The Word who was with God is He,
Himself is God whom now we see.

It is God’s sole-be­got­ten Son,
Through whom we now ap­proach His throne,
The First and Last, the Prince of Peace,
The Con­quer­or through whom wars case.

The times pre­dict­ed are ful­filled,
God’s fiery wrath must now be stilled;
His Son, made man, doth bear our load
Of guilt, our peace buys with His blood.

It is a time of joy to­day,
With mourn­ing and with woe away!
Woe, woe to him who us re­viled!
God’s seen in flesh—we’re re­con­ciled.

The Lord who bears our sin is here,
Who’ll bruise the ser­pent’s head is near,
The death of death—the woe of hell—
The Lord of Life with us doth dwell.

All foes are put our feet be­neath.
For sin and Sa­tan, hell and death,
Are brought to shame and put to flight
Upon this great, this won­drous night.

Oh! hap­py world, thrice hap­py they!
Who on this low­ly In­fant stay
Their souls, and with be­liev­ing eyes
In Him their Sav­ior re­cog­nize.

Now praise the Lord who­e’er can praise,
Who, from their low es­tate to raise
His en­emies, from His high throne
Sent down His loved, His on­ly Son.

Up! join the an­gel host and cry,
Now glory be to God most high;
Let peace pre­vail the world around.
Good-will to men and joy abound.