COME BEHOLD THE VIRGIN MOTHER
Come behold the Virgin Mother
Fondly leaning on her child,
Nature shews not such another,
Glorious, holy, meek, and mild:
Bethlehem's antient walls enclose him,
Dwelling place of David once;
Now no friendly homesteed knows him,
Tho' the noblest of his sons.
Many a prophecy before him
Publish'd his bright advent long,
Guardian Angels low adore him
In a joyous heavenly song;
Eastern Sages see with wonder
His bright Star illume the day,
O'er the volumes old they ponder,
Volumes of dark prophecy.
Royal Bethlehem how deserted,
All his pomp and splendor lost;
Is a stable, vile and dirty,
All the welcome you can boost?
For they travel, of inquiring
Where the wondrous babe is born?
On they came with great desiring,
Although others treat with scorn.
See, a babe of days and weakness
Heaven's Almighty now appears,
Liable to death and sickness,
Shame and agony and tears.
Sovereign he and great Creator,
He who form'd the heav'ns and earth,
Yet takes on him human nature,
Angels wonder at his birth.
Why, ah, why this condescension,
God with mortal man to dwell?
Why lay by his grand pretension,
He who does all thrones excell?
'Tis to be a man, a brother,
With us sinners of mankind:
Vain we search for such another,
Ne'er we love like this shall find.
'Tis to make himself an offering
As a pure atoning lamb,
Souls redeeming by his suffering,
That in human flesh he came;
As a God he could not suffer,
He a body true must have;
As a man what he might offer
Could not satisfy or save.
Tho' an infant now you view him,
He shall fill his Father's throne,
Gather all the Nations to him;
Every knee shall then bow down;
Foes shall at his presence tremble,
Great and small, and quick and dead,
None can fly, none dare dissemble,
None find where to hide his head.
Friends! Oh then in chearful voices
They shall shout with glad acclaim,
While each rising saint rejoices,
Saints of high or lowest fame.
Then what different appearing
We 'mong mortal tribes shall find;
Groaning those who now are sneering,
Triumphing the humble mind.
May we now, that day forestalling,
Hear the word, and read and pray,
Listen to the Gospel calling,
And with humble heart obey,
Give us hearty true repentance,
Life in faith and holiness;
then we need not fear thy sentence,
But may trust thy saving grace.
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah,
Praise the Lord.
(Contributed by Frank DiSalle - December 2003)