I come from the lofty heavens today

Representative Text

1 “I come from th’lofty heav’ns today;
I bring a new melodious lay;
A rich melodious lay I bring,
And this the tale I tell, I sing:

2 “Lo! from a chosen maid this morn,
A lovely Babe for you is born;
That Babe, so soft, so mild, shall be
Your joy, your sweet felicity.

3 “He is the Lord, our God on high!
His bounty shall your need supply,
His own heart’s blood your ransom pay,
And wash each stain of guilt away.

4 “He brings you all the bliss profound
His Father, God, diffuses round,
That with us now and evermore,
Ye may the realms of light explore.

5 “How mark the sign with fond desire,
The manger and the mean attire;
Lo! there you find the Infant lain,
Whose hands the universe sustain.

6 "Come all, and let us joyful be;
Come with the shepherds in and see
What God’s unbounded love has done,
To bless us with His own dear Son."

7 Attend, my heart! behold yon shed!
Who fills that rude, that lowly bed?
What babe is that, so sweet, so fair?
Jesus, the lovely Babe, is there!

8 Welcome, illustrious Guest sublime!
Thou hast not scorned a world of crime,
But come in banishment to me:
How shall I pay my thanks to Thee?

9 Alas! Creator, Lord of all!
Art Thou the inmate of a stall?
And hast Thou lain Thy lovely head
Where menial beasts are nightly fed?

10 Had this wide world far wider bounds,
Of gems and gold a rich compound,
It were too poor, too small to be,
A narrow cradle bed for Thee.

11 The swathing-band, the briary hay,
Thy purple these, Thy silk array;
On these, great Monarch! Thou canst shine,
Rich as upon Thy throne divine.

12 Thus woulds! Thou teach my soul to see
This worthless world’s reality;
How power and fame, and fortune’s store,
Beneath Thy splendor shine no more.

13 O Jesus! lovely Babe divine!
Thy cradle be this heart of mine;
There make a pure, soft shrine for Thee,
That I may ne’er forgetful be.

14 That gladness may forever string
My chainless soul to leap and sing,
The luscious tones with bliss that brim,
The charming songs of Susannim.

15 Glory and praise to God supreme!
Glad hosts of angels seize the theme;
With joy they peal the anthem new!
"He gave His own dear Son for you!"

Source: The Cyber Hymnal #8347

Author: Martin Luther

Luther, Martin, born at Eisleben, Nov. 10, 1483; entered the University of Erfurt, 1501 (B.A. 1502, M.A.. 1503); became an Augustinian monk, 1505; ordained priest, 1507; appointed Professor at the University of Wittenberg, 1508, and in 1512 D.D.; published his 95 Theses, 1517; and burnt the Papal Bull which had condemned them, 1520; attended the Diet of Worms, 1521; translated the Bible into German, 1521-34; and died at Eisleben, Feb. 18, 1546. The details of his life and of his work as a reformer are accessible to English readers in a great variety of forms. Luther had a huge influence on German hymnody. i. Hymn Books. 1. Ellich cristlich lider Lobgesang un Psalm. Wittenberg, 1524. [Hamburg Library.] This contains 8 German h… Go to person page >

Translator: J. S.

(no biographical information available about J. S..) Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: I come from the lofty heavens today
German Title: Vom Himmel hoch da komm ich her
Author: Martin Luther
Translator: J. S.
Language: English
Copyright: Public Domain



Initially Luther used the folk melody associated with his first stanza as the tune for this hymn. Later he composed this new tune for his text. VOM HIMMEL HOCH was first published in Valentin Schumann's Geistliche Lieder in 1539. Johann S. Bach (PHH 7) used Luther's melody in three places in his wel…

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The Cyber Hymnal #8347
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The Cyber Hymnal #8347

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