Act One, Scene 3

Segment 3.4


(On the hillside outside Bethlehem. The shepherds are sleeping. Eli is keeping watch. An ANGEL appears on the hillside above them. As the light intensifies, Eli turns and sees the angel. He gazes in awe for a moment.)

[Music cue: “Glory to God in the HighestMP3, PDF ]+

The shepherd Eli sees an angel
ELI (awakening the others): Wake up! Wake up, all of you.

(The other shepherds awake, see the angel, and shrink back, frightened.)

ANGEL: Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

CHORUS OF ANGELS
Glory, glory, glory, glory, glory!

All the shepherds see the angel
ANGEL: For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.

CHORUS OF ANGELS
Glory, glory, glory, glory, glory!

ANGEL: And this shall be a sign unto you: ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.39

(Lights up on the multitude of angels on the colonnade.)

Angels sing to the shepherds
CHORUS OF ANGELS
Glory, glory, glory, glory, glory to God!
Glory to God in the highest,
And peace on earth, good will to men.
Glory to God in the highest!
Glory to God! Glory to God!
Glory to God on high!

(The Angel steps down from the hillside, and a bright new star appears in the sky.)

ASA: The prayers of our people have been answered.

ELI: Then let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which the Lord has made known unto us.40

[Music cue: “Glory to God—Reprise” underscore MP3, PDF ]

JESHUA (pointing to the new star): Wait! Look!

NATHAN: What is that?

REUBEN: In the east.41 I’ve never seen it before.

AMON: What does it mean?

JESHUA: All things testify of him.

ELI: “There shall come a Star out of Jacob.”

REUBEN: “And a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel.”42

NATHAN: He is a king.

JACOB: The King of glory.43

ELI: Come, let’s hurry!

(They make ready to go. Asa walks away from the group.)

NATHAN: Grandfather!

(Nathan runs to Asa.)

NATHAN (cont’d): Grandfather, aren’t you coming?

ASA: I’ll stay with the sheep.

NATHAN: Don’t you want to see Him?

ASA: “I shall see him, but not now.”44 Nathan, go. Follow the star. And find the Child.

(Nathan embraces Asa.)

NATHAN: Yes!

(They depart.)

+ Because these two pieces are performed without a break, the audio file contains both of them.

 

NOTES
39. See Luke 2:10–12.
40. See Luke 2:15.
41. See Matthew 2:2.
42. Numbers 24:17.
43. See Psalms 24:7–10.
44. Numbers 24:17.


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