Songs for Epiphany

“The Father of Lights”

Most churches celebrate the season of Christmas.  The messages, music and decor reflect the themes, content, and traditions of the ‘season.’  In a traditional church calendar the season of ‘Epiphany’ follows Christmas (The 1st Sunday after Jan 6).  Epiphany can be a wonderful tonic for the naivete and sentimentality that creeps so wholeheartedly into many of our holiday celebrations. Epiphany looks forward to the glory of the incarnation as revealing God’s light and will for his creation in Christ before all the nations of the world. Our word epiphany comes from a Greek word meaning “manifestation or appearance,” and in church history this word has become closely associated with the revelation of Christ in connection with the visit of the Magi. Here are a few songs besides the traditional carols that I have found helpful in carrying a holiday-dozed congregation into the glory of our King.

Songs for Epiphany

Post – Singing Christmas after Dec 25th.

At the Name of Jesus (Gilley arr.)
mp3 | leadsheet

Brightest and Best of the Sons of the Morning (Star of the East)
| leadsheet | capo | Southern Harmony Image

Christ, Whose Glory Fills the Skies
Luke Morton – MP3 | Chart
Brian Moss – mp3 | chart
High Street Hymns – mp3 | Chord Chart | Lead Sheet | Piano Score
Matthew Smith – mp3 | chart
Castle Island Hymns – mp3 | chart

Go, Tell it On the Mountain
mp3leadsheet | other versions

Glory Be to God on High (Benedict arr.)
mp3 leadsheet

Hail to the Lord’s Annointed
welcome wagon – mp3 | leadsheet
sandra mccracken – mp3 | chords | leadsheet

Jesus Came, the Heaven’s Adoring (Benedict arr.)
Bruce – mp3leadsheet
Michael Van Patter – mp3 | leadsheet
Castle Island Hymns – mp3 | leadsheet

Jesus, the Light of the World  (Old Gospel Tune)
mp3 | leadsheet

Joy to the World (trad.)
mp3 | leadsheet

Here I am to Worship (Light of the World)
mp3 | leadsheet

Light of Light, Enlighten Me (Partain arr.)
mp3 | Chords | lead sheet | info

Lord, Jesus Christ, Be Present Now (Partain arr.)
mp3 | chords | leadsheet

O Christ, Our King, Creator Lord (B. Brooks arr.)
mp3 | leadsheet

Prepare Ye the Way (Derek Webb)
mp3 | chart

They Came Bearing Gifts (Benedict arr.)

Break Forth, O Beauteous Heavenly Light (Pressley Arr.)
mp3 | leadsheet | info

When Christ’s Appearing Was Made Known (Benedict arr.)
mp3 | lead-sheet | other versions

Joy Has Dawned (Getty,Townend)

This is the Christ (McCracken arr.)
mp3 | chords

Other Texts:

O King of Glory, David’s Son (Winkworth)

Christ, our True and Only Light (Winkworth)

From the Eastern Mountains (G. Thring)

Hail, Thou Source of Ev’ry Blessing (Woodd)

More texts from the Oremus Hymnal

Texts for Epiphany

Isaiah 60:1-12 | Psalm 19 & 72

Matthew 2: 1-12 | John 8:12

Romans 15:5-13 | Ephesians 3:1-12

Titus 2:11-14 | Revelation 21:22-26


13 thoughts on “Songs for Epiphany

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  1. I’m definitely bookmarking this list for next year. This year I’m slowly adding liturgical themes into the services here at Redeemer, and planning on going more explicit next year. I’m considering this my practice year. Thanks so much for the resources, Bruce.

  2. Also, the hymn “From the Eastern Mountains” is the same meter as “At the Name of Jesus” and is another fitting Epiphany text.

    >Gather in the outcasts, all who’ve gone astray,
    >Throw Thy radiance o’er them, guide them on their way.
    >Those who never knew Thee, those who’ve wandered far,
    >Guide them by the brightness of Thy guiding star.

  3. My favorite is When Christ’s Appearing Was Made Known, an old Latin text by Cael­i­us Se­dul­i­us (5th century.)

    When Christ’s appearing was made known,
    King Herod trembled for his throne;
    But He Who offers heavenly birth
    Seeks not the kingdoms of this earth.

    The eastern sages saw from far
    And followed on His guiding star;
    By light their way to Light they trod,
    And by their gifts confessed their God.

    Within the Jordan’s sacred flood
    The heavenly Lamb in meekness stood,
    That He, to Whom no sin was known,
    Might cleanse His people from their own.

    And O what miracle divine,
    When water reddened into wine!
    He spake the word, and forth it flowed
    In streams that nature ne’er bestowed.

    For this Thy glad epiphany:
    All glory unto Jesus be
    Whom with the Father we adore
    And Holy Ghost forevermore.

    It’s in Redeemer Presbyterian Austin’s hymnal (worth calling them for a copy, if it’s still in print, lots of great Church year texts.)

  4. Here’s another good one I recently discovered.

    1. Hail, O Source of ev’ry blessing,
    Father of all humankind!
    Gentiles now, your grace possessing;
    in your courts admission find.
    Grateful now, we fall before you,
    in your church obtain a place,
    see your glory and adore you,
    praise your truth and laud your grace.

    2. Once far off but now invited,
    we approach your sacred throne,
    in your covenant united,
    reconciled, redeemed, made one.
    Now revealed to Eastern sages,
    see the Star of Mercy shine,
    myst’ry hid in former ages,
    myst’ry great of love Divine.

    3. Hail, O all-inviting Saviour!
    Gentiles now their off’rings bring,
    in your temples seek your favor,
    Jesus Christ, our Lord and King.
    May we, body, soul, and spirit,
    live devoted to your praise,
    glorious realms of bliss inherit,
    grateful anthems ever raise.

    Test: Basil Wood, c. 1821
    Tune: C. Hubert H. Parry, 1897 D

    I think this goes well with the tune
    (hear it here:

  5. I’ve come across your blog a number of times and have enjoyed your writings (both musical and non). Here’s an old anonymous text I came across – just re-tuned it pretty recently and thought you may enjoy it, based on this post. There’s also a link at the bottom with a recording. I can send you chords and stuff sometime if you’re interested!

    Hark, what music fills the sky!
    “Glory be to God on high,”
    Angels sing, and hosts reply.

    Hallelujah (3x)

    To the sons of men is given
    God’s dear Son, best gift of heaven,
    Pledge of grace and sin forgiven.

    Hallelujah (3x)

    So we praise the One who gave
    To the manger and the grave,
    All to ransom, all to save.

    Hallelujah (3x)

    Christ we own as Lord and King,
    And as tribute meet we bring
    Songs which angels cannot sing.

    Hallelujah (3x)

  6. Great post. I am actually using Hail to the Lord’s anointed this week to begin Advent. I have made a lead sheet of the music. I am happy to share with you and anyone who wants it.

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