The First Noel | Hymn of the Week

This Thursday is Epiphany, when we celebrate the manifestation of God to the world!

The First Noel tells the story of the shepherds and wise men as they followed the star to meet Jesus. How can you meet Jesus this week?


Verse 1
The first Noel the angel did say
was to certain poor shepherds in fields as they lay;
in fields where they lay keeping their sheep,
on a cold winter’s night that was so deep.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel,
born is the King of Israel.

Verse 2
They looked up and saw a star
shining in the east, beyond them far;
and to the earth it gave great light,
and so it continued both day and night.

Verse 3
And by the light of that same star
three Wise Men came from country far;
to seek for a king was their intent,
and to follow the star wherever it went.

Verse 4
This star drew nigh to the northwest,
o’er Bethlehem it took its rest;
and there it did both stop and stay,
right over the place where Jesus lay.

Verse 5
Then entered in those Wise Men three,
full reverently upon the knee,
and offered there, in his presence,
their gold and myrrh and frankincense.

Text: Anonymous (1833)
Music: English Carol, 17th century
Meter: D
Copyright: Public Domain

This hymn is featured in our 2021-2022 HYMN OF THE WEEK PLAYLIST


Lyric Video

epiphany video

This video has a simple explanation of Epiphany and reenacts the story of the wise men finding and worshiping Jesus.

additional resources


Hymnary has lots of helpful information on hymns, including scans of hymnal pages, and text comparisons.

Epiphany Celebration

Here are some great ideas for celebrating Epiphany with children.


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