Scripture Verse

A star will come out of Jacob; a scepter will rise out of Israel. Numbers 24:17


Charles Coffin (1676–1749)

Words: Charles Cof­fin, in the Pa­ris Bre­vi­ary, 1736 (Quae stel­la so­le pul­chri­or). Trans­lat­ed from La­tin to Eng­lish by John Chand­ler, 1837.

Music: Pu­er No­bis Nas­ci­tur, Tri­er, Ger­ma­ny, 15th Cen­tu­ry. Adapt­ed by Mi­chael Prae­to-ri­us, 1609. Har­mo­ny by George R. Wood­ward, 1910 (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tunes:

Michael Praetorius (1571–1621)


What star is this, with beams so bright,
More love­ly than the noon­day light?
’Tis sent to an­nounce a new­born king,
Glad tid­ings of our God to bring.

’Tis now ful­filled what God de­creed,
From Ja­cob shall a star pro­ceed;
And lo! the east­ern sag­es stand
To read in Hea­ven the Lord’s com­mand.

While out­ward signs the star dis­plays,
An in­ward light the Lord con­veys,
And urg­es them, with force be­nign,
To seek the Giv­er of the sign.

True love can brook no dull de­lay;
Nor toil nor dan­gers stop their way
Home, kin­dred, fa­ther land and all
They leave at their Cre­at­or’s call.

O, while the star of hea­ven­ly grace
Invites us, Lord, to seek Thy face,
May we no more that grace re­pel,
Or quench that light which shines so well!

To God the Fa­ther, God the Son,
And Ho­ly Spi­rit, Three in One,
May ev­ery tongue and na­tion raise
An end­less song of thank­ful praise!