There's a Light Upon the Mountains

This is a hymn about Christ, the light.   It is recommended for both (late) Advent and Christmastide, but can be used at other times too. The words are based on Song of Songs 2:8.

The words were was written by English-born, American educated Methodist minister,  Alfred Henry Burton (1840-1930), and first published by in 1910.

With meter D, tunes it is set to include:
  • MT. HOLYOKE by Maurice L. Wostenholm (1887-1959)
  • CONVERSE (Converse) by Charles C. Converse (1868)
  • AUTUMN (Barthélemon) - adapted from Durandarte and Belerma: A Pathetic Scotch Ballad (1797).


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Massed choir with organ, tune MT. HOLYOKE

Singer with country-style band, professional recording:

Singer with piano:

Choir with brass band, words on-screen:

Singer with guitar:

Instrumental - piano, tune MT. HOLYOKE

Instrumental - organ, with words on screen. Tune CONVERSE

Instrumental - organ, tune MT. HOLYOKE


There’s a light upon the mountains,
And the day is at the spring,
When our eyes shall see the beauty
And the glory of the King:
Weary was our heart with waiting,
And the night watch seemed so long,
But His triumph day is breaking
And we hail it with a song.

In the fading of the starlight
We may see the coming morn;
And the lights of men are paling
In the splendors of the dawn;
For the eastern skies are glowing
As with light of hidden fire,
And the hearts of men are stirring
With the throbs of deep desire.

There’s a hush of expectation
And a quiet in the air
And the breath of God is moving
In the fervent breath of prayer;
For the suffering, dying Jesus
Is the Christ upon the throne,
And the travail of our spirit
Is the travail of His own.

He is breaking down the barriers,
He is casting up the way;
He is calling for His angels
To build up the gates of day:
But His angels here are human,
Not the shining hosts above;
For the drum beats of His army
Are the heartbeats of our love.

Hark! we hear a distant music
And it comes with fuller swell;
’Tis the triumph song of Jesus,
Of our King, Immanuel!
Go ye forth with joy to meet Him!
And, my soul, be swift to bring
All thy sweetest and thy dearest
For the triumph of our King!

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