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Sunday, December 20, 2009

A Mostly Forgotten Christmas Hymn, by Charles Wesley

Where is the holy Heav’n-born Child,
Heir of the everlasting throne,
Who Heav’n and earth hath reconciled,
And God and man rejoined in one?

Shall we of earthly kings inquire,
To courts or palaces repair?
The nation’s Hope, the world’s Desire,
Alas! we cannot find Him there.

Shall learning show the sinner’s Friend,
Or scribes a sight of Christ afford?
Us to His natal place they send,
But never go to see their Lord.

We search the outward Church in vain,
They cannot Him we seek declare,
They have not found the Son of Man,
Or known the sacred Name they bear.

Then let us turn no more aside,
But use the light Himself imparts,
His Spirit is our surest Guide,
His Spirit glimmering in our hearts.

Drawn by His grace we come from far,
And fix on Heav’n our wistful eyes,
That ray divine, that orient star
Directs us where the Infant lies.

See there! the newborn Savior see,
By faith discern the great I AM;
’Tis He! the eternal God! ’tis He
That bears the mild Immanuel’s Name.

The Prince of Peace on earth is found,
The Child is born, the Son is giv’n;
Tell it to all the nations round,
Jehovah is come down from Heav’n!

Jehovah is come down to raise
His dying creatures from their fall,
And all may now receive the grace
Which brings eternal life to all.

Lord, we receive the grace and Thee,
With joy unspeakable receive,
And rise Thine open face to see,
And one with God for ever live.

This hymn, which I have never heard sung, is one of over 250 on the Charles Wesley page of nethymnal.org. You can hear music which has accompanied the text at the hymn's own page.

Thanks for reading. A blessed Christmas!

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