Scripture Verse

He sent and killed all the male children in Bethlehem and in that region who were two years old or under. Matthew 2:16


Words: Ri­chard F. Lit­tle­dale, in the Peo­ple’s Hym­nal, 1867, alt.

Music: Ham­bridge Eng­lish tra­di­tion­al tune (🔊 pdf nwc).

If you know where to get a good pho­to of Lit­tle­dale (head & shoul­ders, at least 200×300 pix­els),


In paradise reposing,
By life’s eter­nal well,
The tender lambs of Je­sus
In greenest pastures dwell.

There palms and tiny crownlets
Aglow with brightest gem,
Bedeck the baby martyrs
Who died in Bethlehem.

With them the rose-wreathed army
Of children undefiled,
Who passed through mortal torments
For love of Christ the child;

With them in peace unending,
With them in joyous mirth,
Are all the stainless infants
Which since have gone from earth.

The angels, once their guardians,
Their fellows now in grace,
With them, in love adoring,
See God the Fa­ther’s face.

The lullaby to hush them
In that eter­nal rest,
Is sweet angelic singing,
Their nurses mothers blest.

O Je­su, loving shepherd,
Who tenderly dost bear
Thy lambs in Thine own bosom,
Bring us to join them there.