…in Bethlehem of Judaea. Matthew 2:5
Shine calm and bright, ye moonbeams light,
O’er Bethle’em’s town in slumber,
O’er young and old, o’er burgess bold,
And guests in goodly number;
For sheltered safe from winter’s frost,
Well housed and warm all lie,
Secure from snow in street below,
And screened from frozen sky.
But Babe benign! No couch is Thine,
Save lowly manger stall,
Where cold winds blow on Thy form divine,
Who comest to save us all.
The crowds who sleep in Bethle’em’s walls
Both citizen and stranger,
From royal blood alike have sprung,
And spurn the humble manger.
But all one day must wend their way,
Heaving their latest sigh,
To mortal doom in lonesome tomb,
And in corruption lie.
But Babe benign! No power malign
Shall over Thee bear sway;
Thy life of light in the heavens bright
Shall glow in eternal day!
To us, sweet Babe! Thy lowly crib
Than costly couch is dearer,
It seems to make Thee more our own,
To bring the Godhead nearer!
It seems to show Thy sympathy
For human grief and pain,
And makes us long to raise the song
Of Noel o’er again!
O Babe benign! Thy love divine
Shed round us, day by day;
Sweet Child of light! Be Thou our might,
Our gentle King for aye!