Written by Lise Caldwell
Angels we have heard on high
Sweetly singing o’er the plains,
And the mountains in reply
Echoing their joyous stains
Shepherds why this jubilee?
Why your joyous strains prolong?
What the gladsome tidings be
Which inspire your heav’nly song?
Come to Bethlehem and see
Him whose birth the angels sing.
Come adore on bended knee
Christ the Lord, the newborn King.
Gloria in excelsis Deo,
Gloria in excelsis Deo.
Despite what you might have thought as a child, the chorus of this song has nothing to do with eggshells. “Gloria in excelsis Deo”–“Glory to God in the highest.”
I love how this carol reads like a script. In the first verse, the shepherds excitedly share what they have seen and heard. In the second, someone asks them what they’re so excited about. In the third verse, they reply with instructions–Come and see! Come adore! And throughout it all the words of the angels ring: Glory to God in the Highest. The glorious angels and the humble shepherds both praise God and direct others toward worship. The shepherds, given tidings of great joy, don’t hesitate to share them. Do the same. Share the message with someone today–after all, it is good news of great joy for all people.