2020-02-26 to 28 Pictures: Charleston, South Carolina

One of the few upsides of having to cancel our Spring Break trip last March at the onset of the pandemic is that we are "stuck" with a rather large voucher from one of those discount airlines. Last autumn, Tricia and I spent a weekend in Savannah, Georgia and had a...

A John 3:16 Craft for Kids

John 3:16 is one of the most well known and reassuring verses in the Bible. For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.John 3:16 (NIV) The following is a little craft I threw...

2020-03-01 Pictures: Lyndsey’s College Signing Day

This afternoon Lyndsey made it official, signing her letter of intent to play college basketball for the Hiram College Terriers starting next year. While she made the decision and committed to Hiram before Christmas, she has been looking forward to this day since her...

2020-02-13 Pictures: Lyndsey’s 18th Birthday

I am little behind on posting photos. These are some of my favorites from a couple of weekends ago when we got a chance to celebrate Lyndsey's 18th birthday. It's hard to believe that my little girl is officially an adult. It was nice to have the family all back...


Introduction I love working with kids, and I love teaching them hard concepts in ways they can understand. To that end, for years I have been working on a dictionary of theological terms for kids and teens. In sharing those definitions, there seemed no better place to...

If You Want It Done Right

In all likelihood, you know how the phrase ends: If you want it done right, DO IT YOURSELF! This is a bit of a mantra for me, and frankly, something that I struggle with daily both in leadership and in my Christian walk.  In theory, this is easy to accept. ...

What Does God Hate?

This is the little and humble post that started it all. I happened to be reading through my Bible, and this passage impacted me so much that I posted a little blurb about it on Facebook. That was July 28, 2008, and I've been writing and sharing ever since. (Maybe...

December 12 – Angels We Have Heard On High (A Christmas Carol Advent)





The words for this song come from a traditional French carol titled Les Anges dans nos campagnes.  The earliest  printed version of the French carol is from 1842, though many believe it was likely written in the 18th century.  The most common English translation was done by James Chadwick in 1862.

Commentary & Analysis

The title of this song comes from the first line, but at its core, this song praises God with the refrain “Gloria in excelsis Deo” translated as “Glory to God in the Highest.”  Each verse speaks to some of the visitors at the birth of Christ and encourages them to give “glory to God in the highest.”  The first verse speaks of the angels who came and announced the birth of Jesus.  It speaks of the delight they must have felt at the privilege of announcing the birth of Christ.  The second verse speaks to the shepherds who received the good news of Christ’s birth asking where their great joy comes from.  The answer, of course, from God in the Highest.  The final two verses speak to a more general group of people encouraging them to adore to King and raise their hearts in love to God.  This song serves to remind us at this Christmastime that hearts should be full of worship for our God most High.

Questions for further Reflection / Devotion

The following questions are meant for your reflection and or devotion.  Feel free to meditate on them, discuss them with your family or others or post your responses here.  I would love to hear from you.

  1. How do you worship God in how you choose to celebrate Christmas?
  2. What physical thing can you do this Christmas to raise your heart to God in love?
  3. The refrain of this song sings “glory to God in the highest.”  How can you make this the goal of your life?
  4. How does God get glory through your life?
  5. This Christmas morning, take some time to pray to God.  Recognize his majesty and greatness and thank him for everything he has done for us.


Angels we have heard on high,
Singing sweetly through the night,
And the mountains in reply
Echoing their brave delight.
Gloria in excelsis Deo.
Gloria in excelsis Deo.

Shepherds, why this jubilee?
Why these songs of happy cheer?
What great brightness did you see?
What glad tiding did you hear?
Gloria in excelsis Deo.
Gloria in excelsis Deo.

Come to Bethlehem and see
Him whose birth the angels sing;
Come, adore on bended knee
Christ, the Lord, the new-born King.
Gloria in excelsis Deo.
Gloria in excelsis Deo.

See him in a manger laid
Whom the angels praise above;
Mary, Joseph, lend your aid,
While we raise our hearts in love.
Gloria in excelsis Deo.
Gloria in excelsis Deo.

Return to a Christmas Carol Advent index page.