237Luke 2:8-14CM
WHILE shepherds watched their flocks by night,
   All seated on the ground,
The angel of the Lord came down,
    And glory shone around.
2  ‘Fear not,’ said he, for mighty dread
    Had seized their troubled mind;
‘Glad tidings of great joy I bring
    To you and all mankind.
3  ‘To you, in David’s town, this day,
    Is born, of David’s line,
A Saviour, Who is Christ the Lord;
    And this shall be the sign:
4  ‘The heavenly Babe you there shall find
    To human view displayed,
All meanly wrapped in swaddling bands,
    And in a manger laid.’
5  Thus spake the seraph; and forthwith
    Appeared a shining throng
Of angels, praising God, who thus
    Addressed their joyful song:
6  ‘All glory be to God on high,
    And on the earth be peace;
Goodwill henceforth from Heaven to men
    Begin and never cease.’
Nahum Tate, 1652-1715