Scripture Verse

The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 2 Corinthians 10:3–4


John M. Neale (1818–1866)


Words: Ve­nan­ti­us For­tu­na­tus, 569 (Pan­ge lin­gua glo­ri­osi proe­li­um cer­ta­mi­nis). Trans­lat­ed from La­tin to Eng­lish by Per­cy Dear­mer, 1931, and John M. Neale.

Music: Pi­ca­rdy French ca­rol me­lo­dy. Har­mo­ny from The Eng­lish Hym­nal (Lon­don: Ox­ford Uni­ver­si­ty Press, 1906), num­ber 318 (🔊 pdf nwc).


Sing, my tongue, the glo­ri­ous bat­tle,
Sing the end­ing of the fray;
Now above the cross, the tro­phy,
Sound the loud tri­um­phant lay:
Tell how Christ the world’s Re­deem­er,
As a vic­tim won the day.

He, our mak­er, deep­ly griev­ing
That the first made Ad­am fell,
When he ate the fruit for­bid­den
Whose re­ward was death and hell,
Marked e’en then this tree the ru­in
Of the first tree to dis­pel.

Tell how, when at length the full­ness,
Of th’ap­point­ed time was come,
Christ, the Word, was born of wo­man,
Left for us His hea­ven­ly home;
Showed us human life made per­fect,
Shone as light amid the gloom.

Lo! He lies an In­fant weep­ing,
Where the nar­row man­ger stands,
While the mo­ther-maid His mem­bers
Wraps in mean and low­ly bands,
And the swad-dling clothes is wind­ing
Round His help­less feet and hands.

Thus, with thir­ty years ac­comp­lished,
Went He forth from Na­za­reth,
Destined, de­di­cat­ed, will­ing,
Wrought His work, and met His death.
Like a lamb He hum­bly yield­ed
On the cross His dy­ing breath.

There the nails and spears He suf­fers,
Vinegar, and gall, and reed;
From His sac­red bo­dy pierc­èd
Blood and wa­ter both pro­ceed;
Precious flood, which all cre­ation
From the stain of sin hath freed.

Faithful cross, thou sign of tri­umph,
Now for us the nob­lest tree,
None in fo­li­age, none in blos­som,
None in fruit thy peer may be;
Symbol of the world’s re­demp­tion,
For the weight that hung on thee!

Bend thy boughs, O tree of glo­ry!
Thy re­lax­ing sinews bend;
For awhile the an­cient ri­gor
That thy birth be­stowed, sus­pend;
And the King of hea­ven­ly beau­ty
On thy bo­som gent­ly tend!

Thou alone wast count­ed wor­thy
This world’s ran­som to sus­tain,
That a ship­wrecked race for­ev­er
Might a port of re­fuge gain,
With the sac­red blood anoint­ed
Of the Lamb of sin­ners slain.

To the Tri­ni­ty be glo­ry
Everlasting, as is meet:
Equal to the Fa­ther, eq­ual
To the Son, and Pa­ra­clete:
God the Three in One, whose prais­es
All cre­at­ed things re­peat.