Scripture Verse

When Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, saying, Where is He that is born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the east, and are come to worship Him. Matthew 2:1–2


Franz J. Haydn (1732–1809)

Words: Ma­ry N. Meigs, Po­ems (New York: Pud­ney, Hook­er & Rus­sell, 1844), pag­es 127–28.

Music: Brown­well Franz J. Hay­dn (1732–1809) (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tune:

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


They seek the Babe—no re­gal state—
No prince­ly pomp are His the while;
On Him no bright-robed cour­ti­ers wait,
But hum­ble pea­sants watch His smile:
The ma­gi kneel, and shep­herds bend,
To Him who an­gels did attend.

He has re­signed a crown of light—
Laid all His glo­ri­ous vest­ments by—
And shroud­ing in this world of night
The splen­dors of the Deity,
Hath come to suc­cor, save, and bless,
His crea­tures in their wretch­ed­ness.

Savior, again we hail the day,
When bright­ly rose Thy na­tal star;
And join the an­gels’ Hea­ven-taught lay,
Which in the az­ure fields afar—
The mu­sic of ce­les­ti­al spheres,
Rang on the shep­herds’ list­en­ing ears.

And lo, from na­ture’s hand we bear
An of­fer­ing for Thy ho­ly shrine;
With ev­er­green, and gar­lands fair,
High arch and lof­ty pil­lar twine:
And joy­ful­ly our pæ­ans raise,
Redeemer, Sav­ior, in Thy praise.

And though no bright, pe­cul­iar gem
Is hung up­on our midn­ight sky—
Like that which shone o’er Beth­le­hem,
What time the hea­ven­ly hosts were nigh—
Thy Word our po­lar star shall be,
Guiding us on, to Hea­ven and Thee.