We Have Heard on High
Kenneth W. Osbeck
As vast numbers of angels swiftly descended toward earth through the star sprinkled
sky, the leading angel halted them with a sign. They hovered with folded wings
over a silent field near Bethlehem. "There they are," said the leading angel,
"the humble shepherds who have been chosen by God to receive our message. It will
be the most wonderful news that mortal man has ever received. Are you ready with
your great angelic chorus?"
The leading angel
drifted slightly downward so that he could be seen by the shepherds below. They
were terrified! Each one of them covered his face in the brilliance of the light
but earnestly listened with awe as the vision before him began to speak in his
"Do not be afraid. I bring you
good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David
a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord" (Luke 2:11).
surrounding the angel was the brilliant heavenly host, and echoing through the
sky was the most beautiful singing that the shepherds had ever heard, exulting
and praising God for the long-awaited gift of His Son. They made haste to see
the Savior with their own eyes.
The Bible teaches
that angels are the ministering servants of God and that they are continually
being sent to help and protect us, the heirs of salvation. Certainly their most
important task, however, was this momentous occasion announcing Christ's arrival
Although little is known of its origins,
this inspiring eighteenth-century French carol has become a universal favorite.
"Angels we have heard on high, sweetly
singing o'er the plains,
and the mountains, in reply, echoing their joyous
Shepherds, why this jubilee? Why your joyous strains prolong?
What the gladsome tidings be which inspire your heav'nly song?
to Bethlehem and see Him whose birth the angels sing;
come, adore on bended
knee Christ the Lord, the newborn King.
See Him in a manger laid, Jesus,
Lord of heav'n and earth;
Mary, Joseph, lend your aid, with us sing our Savior's
Chorus: Gloria in excelsis Deo! Gloria in excelsis Deo!"
Used with permission from the Devotion Book, Amazing Grace: 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions
Browse through CBN.com's Christmas Resource
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