Come and Behold Him (Nathan Howe)

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Editor: Nathan Howe (submitted 2010-09-22).   Score information: Letter, 33 pages, 199 kB   Copyright: CC BY NC ND
Edition notes:

General Information

Title: Come and Behold Him
Composer: Nathan Howe

Number of voices: 4vv   Voicing: SATB
Genre: SacredCantata

Language: English
Instruments: Piano

First published: 2010

Description: This Christmas cantata contains the following sections:

  • Introduction (narration and piano)
  • Within the Humblest Walls (SATB and piano)   ( Network.png )
  • Underscore and Narration: Lo, How a Rose e'er Blooming (narration and piano)
  • O Night (solo voice, SATB, and piano)   ( Network.png )
  • Narration (narration)
  • Awake, My Soul, Awake, My Tongue (SATB and piano)   ( Network.png )
  • Underscore and Narration: Stars were Gleaming (Narration, SATB, and piano)
  • Oh, Come, All Ye Faithful (SATB and small group with piano)   ( Network.png )
  • Testimony from presiding authority (spoken)
  • Invitation (TTBB and piano)   ( Network.png )
  • Joy to the World (SATB and piano)   ( Network.png )

External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

Introduction (:45)
And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed…
and Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem…
to be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child…
and she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

Within the Humblest Walls (5:30)
1. Within the humblest walls our Savior came, the Lord who sees the sparrow's fall.
Though He could have the greatest wealth and fame, his birth was in a cattle stall.
How could it be that lowly animals should see the birth of Jesus?
I am amazed! I am amazed at His wisdom, amazed that in a humble place like Bethlehem the Son of God should come.

2. Within the humblest walls our Savior taught and healed the poor, the sick and lame.
He walked with sinners as He humbly sought to magnify them through His name.
How could it be that kings deny while beggars see the light of Jesus?
I am amazed! I am amazed at His mercy, amazed that to the weakest ones he ministered as if they, too, were kings.

3. Within the humblest walls He still is found, the Light of Life to those who seek.
And every worthy child of God is crowned with more than mortal tongue can speak.
How could it be that one like me could be redeemed because of Jesus?
I am amazed! I am amazed at His suffering, amazed that in humility on Calvary He ransomed even me.

"Lo, How a Rose E'er Blooming" (1:20)
Tune from a 15th century German carol
Narrator 2:
Every true prophet since Adam has testified of Jesus Christ. Moses spoke with Him face to face.
Job declared: "I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth."

Isaiah saw Christ in vision and taught: "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace."

On the American continent, prophets taught their people of the birth, ministry, and atonement of Jesus for hundreds of years before He came to Bethlehem. They, too, saw the new star, the sign that the Messiah had finally come.

For centuries, the story of what has come to be called Christmas has given light and hope to those who believe in Jesus Christ. For His example and teachings, His atonement and resurrection, we love the story of the holy night when He came into the world.

O Night (3:30)
O night so long foretold! O night so long remembered! When the shepherds woke to hear the angel voices and Earth received her King.

The Light of all the world, The Christ is born of Mary!
Let the Earth and Heavens ring in joyful praises
To adore the newborn King.
See the promise of the Father through the ages!
Come receive him, Christ the King.

Narration (:30)
Text from Luke 2:8-11 (KJV)
Narrator 1:
And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

Awake, My Soul, Awake, My Tongue (2:15)
Lyric by Benjamin Keach, pub. 1700
Awake, my soul, awake my tongue,
My glory wake and sing,
And celebrate the holy birth,
The birth of Israel's King!
O happy night that brought forth light,
Which makes the blind to see,
The Day spring from on hight
came down to cheer and visit thee.

(The) careful shepherds with their flocks
Were watching for the morn,
But better news from Heav'n was brought;
Your Savior now is born!
In Bethlehem the Infant lies,
Within a place obscure,
Your Savior's come, O sing God's praise!
O praise Him evermore.
Amen.

"Stars were Gleaming" (2:00)
Tune from a Polish carol
Narrator 2:
On the night when Christ was born, a new star appeared in the heavens, a sign of the coming of the Savior.
Wise men from the east came to worship the young Jesus in response to the star, while others, including King Herod, were not spiritually prepared to receive and rejoice in the sign.
We can be like these wise men by seeking Christ daily in prayer and scripture study, and by following the counsel of living prophets.
The next sign of Christ may not come in the form of a star,
But He will return in glory.

When He comes again, may we fulfill the words of John, who wrote:
"…We know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is."
Thus at Christmas we ponder not only what Christ became,
But also what He would have us become.
May we praise him with our lives as well as our words.

O, Come, All Ye Faithful (5:00)
Text and Melody Attributed to John F. Wade (1711-1786)
Translation by Frederick Oakeley (1802-1880)
Oh, Come, all ye faithful,
Joyful and triumphant!
Oh, come ye to Bethlehem.
Come and behold him,
Born the king of angels;
Oh, come, let us adore him,
Christ, the Lord.

Sing, choirs of angels,
Sing in exultation;
Sing, all ye citizens of heav'n above!
Glory to God,
Glory in the highest;
Oh, come, let us adore him,
Christ, the Lord.

Yea, Lord, we greet thee,
Born this happy morning;
Jesus, to thee be all glory giv'n.
Son of the Father,
Now in flesh appearing;
Oh, come, let us adore him, Christ, the Lord.

Brief Testimony from Presiding Authority (~5:00)

Invitation (3:10)
Shepherd, leave your sheep.
Abandon everything to see the King of Kings.
Shepherd, leave your sheep.

Fisher, leave your net.
Abandon everything to serve the King of Kings.
Fisher, leave your net.

Brother, abandon your sins.
Abandon everything to know the King of Kings.
Brother, leave your sins.

Joy to the World (3:00)
Text by Isaac Watts (1674-1748), alt. William W. Phelps (1792-1872)
Melody by George F. Handel (1685-1759), voicings arr. Lowell Mason (1792-1872)

Joy to the world, the Lord is come;
Let earth receive her King!
Let ev'ry heart prepare him room,
And Saints and angels sing.

Rejoice! Rejoice when Lord is reigns,
And Saints their songs employ.
While fields and floods, rocks, hills, and plains
Repeat the sounding joy.

No more will sin and sorrow grow
Nor thorns infest the ground;
He’ll come and make the blessings flow
Far as the curse was found.

Rejoice! Rejoice in the Most High,
While Israel spreads abroad
Like stars that glitter in the sky
And ever worship God.