Scripture Verse

The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined. Isaiah 9:2

Introduction

Words: Flo­ra Kirk­land, in Sun­day School Hymns No. 1, by Is­aac H. Me­re­dith, Grant C. Tul­lar & Jo­seph W. Ler­man (New York: Tul­lar-Me­re­dith, 1903), num­bers 114 & 253.

Music: How­ard E. Smith (🔊 pdf nwc).

If you know where to get a good pho­to of Kirk­land (head & shoul­ders, at least 200×300 pix­els),

portrait
Howard E. Smith
1863–1918

Lyrics

Shining out of dark­ness,
Came the Christ­mas time,
With light sub­lime, with light sub­lime;
Glory-light from Hea­ven
Thrilled the sleep­ing earth,
The ho­ly night of Je­sus’ birth.
Memories of that glo­ry seem to lin­ger still—
To lin­ger still, o’er vale and hill;
Stars of Christ­mas ev­er seem
More bright, more clear,
Than any star through­out the year.

Refrain

Glory-light came stream­ing
From the court of Heav’n
When Christ—God’s gift to earth—was giv’n;
Shining Christ­mas ta­pers, gleam in ev­ery clime,
In memory of that Light sub­lime.

Shining o’er the man­ger
Where the Christ Child slept,
A star most bright its vi­gil kept;
Seen afar, all si­lent­ly it showed the world
The ban­ner fair of love un­furled.
Wondrous star of Beth­le’em town,
So large, so bright,
O guid­ing light! O guid­ing light!
Lead us all to seek the King of kings to­night;
Thou guid­ing star so bright, so bright!

Refrain

Shepherds on the hill­side
Heard a migh­ty voice,
A voice that bade the world re­joice;
Fear not! rang the mes­sage!
Ring it out again!
The an­gels brought good news to men.
Glory in the high­est! hosts of an­gels sang,
Till all the courts of Hea­ven rang;
Glory in the high­est! how it ech­oes still
That cra­dle song of Beth­le’em’s hill.

Refrain