I cannot tell why He, whom angels worship

1
I cannot tell why He, whom angels worship,
  Should set His love upon the sons of men,
Or why, as Shepherd, He should seek the wand’rers,
  To bring them back, they know not how or when.
But this I know, that He was born of Mary,
  When Bethl’hem’s manger was His only home,
And that He lived at Nazareth and labored,
  And so the Savior, Savior of the world, is come.
2
I cannot tell how silently He suffered,
  As with His peace He graced this place of tears,
Or how His heart upon the Cross was broken,
  The crown of pain to three and thirty years.
But this I know, He heals the broken-hearted,
  And stays our sin, and calms our lurking fear,
And lifts the burden from the heavy laden,
  For yet the Savior, Savior of the world, is here.
3
I cannot tell how He will win the nations,
  How He will claim His earthly heritage,
How satisfy the needs and aspirations
  Of east and west, of sinner and of sage.
But this I know, all flesh shall see His glory,
  And He shall reap the harvest He has sown,
And some glad day His sun shall shine in splendor
  When He the Savior, Savior of the world, is known.
4
I cannot tell how all the lands shall worship,
  When, at His bidding, every storm is stilled,
Or who can say how great the jubilation
  When all the hearts of men with love are filled.
But this I know, the skies will thrill with rapture,
  And myriad, myriad human voices sing,
And earth to heaven, and heaven to earth, will answer:
  At last the Savior, Savior of the world, is King.
32
Frederick Edward Woodworth

Sittingbourne, Kent, United Kingdom

One of the few hymns I find almost impossible to sing. One, because my vocal range doesn't stretch that far, but mainly because the words - wonderful, moving words, get my emotions going, especially those of the second verse. I'm glad there's nobody here at my computer as I read the words or sing it in my mind. Emotion is a taboo subject especially for a retired man in his mid-sixties. On the few occasions it's been sung in our church, I've been able to do no more than to mouth the words with not one syllable passing my lips.


Fernando Somoza

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Very inspiring Christian hymn. I've recorded a piano version with an accompanying orchestra arrangement in soundcloud that you can search by the title.

I cannot tell why He whom angels worship.


Sherryl Ford

Fort Myers, Florida, United States

Any chance someone has translated to Italian?????


Ilona Vadaszi

Budpest, Hungary

I LIKE THIS SONG VERY MUCH, I WANT TO KNOW SOMETHING MORE ABOUT THE WRITER. I KNOW IT IN HUNGARIAN LANGUAGE, I CAN WRITE IT TO YOU.

iT IS:

1. Miért, hogy Ő, kit angyalének dicsért, Költötte ránk szerelme kincseit? Vagy mint a pásztor elveszett után járt, Elmémmel fel nem foghatom, miét? De azt tudom, hogy Máriától származott, Hogy Betlehemben jászol ágya volt, Hogy Názáretben élt és ott volt otthona, Ím így jött el Ő, a világ Megváltója.

2. Nem érthetem, miért szenvedett némán. Békéje fénylik Golgota hegyén, Szíve miért szakadt meg a kereszten, Tövisből mért kapott ott koronát? De azt tudom, hogy megtört szívek orvosa, Bűn, félelem tüzét megoltja Ő, Megterhelt lélek láncait leoldja, Ezért jött el Ő, a világ Megváltója.

3. Miképpen hódolnak előtte népek, Hogy kormányozza földi birtokát, Kelet-nyugatnak, bűnösnek s a bölcsnek Szomját hogy oltja, meg nem mondhatom. De azt tudom, hogy dicsősége felragyog, Hogy amit Ő vet, Ő aratja majd; Győzelme napja nem sokáig várat, Megismerik Őt, a világ Megváltóját.

4. Miképpen áldja Őt magát majd a föld, Ha egy szaván a béke lesz az Úr, Vagy sejted-é az ujjongásnak árját, Ha minden szívet lénye majd betölt? De azt tudom, hogy angyalének ujjong, Megváltott lelkek hangja zengi Őt, Az ég a földnek, föld az égnek mondja: Végre Király Ő, a világ Megváltója!


Claire Withers

Sandbach, Cheshire, United Kingdom

First sang this in the early 90s and loved it. Nearly 10 years later, totally by chance, it was sung at my daughter's Christening. I looked out at the congregation and saw the tears flooding down my father's face. His father suffered the horrors of the trenches 1915-1918. I think "and stays our sin and calms our lurking fear" were particularly relevant to a them both. I am a hopeful, rather than a convinced Christian. Singing these incredible words, to that wonderful tune with my child in my arms and the loving face of my father (now departed) before me, for a few moments I felt the force of it as a reality. Each time I read this I feel it anew. May we all come to see a day "when all the hearts of men with love are filled".


Maria Theresa Mc Conville

Belfast

Thank you so much! I have to sing it at a funeral tomorrow. The lyrics actually reduced me to tears.


Mary Arnold

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States

Every note reaches into the soul. This was sung at a family funeral recently. He was a man who had grown up bearing the cross of special needs. He never went to prom, dated, drove a car, those things we take for granted. May he find all he lacked in this life, countless times over in Heaven.


Maiyo

Nairobi, Kenya

This is a great hymn/carol with a beautiful tune and lovely lyrics. I love to sing it!


Anonymous

United Kingdom

We sang this at my husband's funeral recently. The first part was sung by a talented singer and the refrain was joined by over 200 people. It felt like a foretaste of heaven!


Steve Miller

Detroit, MI, United States

As a young Baptist minister, Fullerton conducted evangelistic missions in many parts of the British Isles. In 1912 he became Home Secretary of the Baptist Missionary Society in England. He was a co-worker of Charles Spurgeon and became a pastor at Melbourne Hall, Leicester. - Songs of the Spirit by Martin

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Please see Michael Petras' comment on 4/30/2011 on when this hymn was first introduced to the public at the Keswick Convention.