1 Under the beautiful Syrian sky,
Keeping their flocks while the night went by
Shepherds were watching; when, on their sight,
Suddenly burst a glorious light;
Lo, from the heavens, an angel fair
Came with a message to meet them there;
While they were trembling with fear and dread,
These were the words that the angel said:
"Tidings, good tidings of joy I bring,
Christ is born, who is Lord and King;"
This was the angel's wonderful song;
Sing it again, and the notes prolong.
2 "This," said the angel "shall be the sign:
Laid in a manger, the babe divine,
Ye in the city may soon behold—
City of David, the place foretold."
Suddenly then with the angel bright,
Multitudes fair of the hosts of light,
Hasten their jubilant notes to raise,
Joining their chorus of joy and praise. [Chorus]
3 Into the city where Christ was born,
Hastened the shepherds at early morn:
There, in the manger, they saw the Child,
Holy, and harmless and undefiled.
Come! let us seek him who came to earth;
Let us rejoice in his lowly birth;
Spread the good news of the Saviour's love;
Join the glad song of the hosts above. [Chorus]
Julia Harriet Johnston, who was born on Jan. 21, 1849, at Salineville, OH, in Columbiana County. Her father was a minister and he mother was a poet. She began writing when she was nine years old but really started writing verse in high school. She lived in Peoria, Ill.
Dianne Shapiro, from "The Singers and Their Songs: sketches of living gospel hymn writers" by Charles Hutchinson Gabriel (Chicago: The Rodeheaver Company, 1916) Go to person page >