[From Manx Soc vol XXI]
" All you who are to mirth inclined."
This rude old carol is from an old MS. copy of about the middle of last century, and was a favourite one in country districts. Various versions have been printed in works on Christmas Carols, but this appears to extend much farther than any I have met with.
ALL you who are to mirth inclined,
Consider well, and bear in mind
What your great God for you hath done,
In sending his beloved Son.
Let all your songs and praises be
Unto his Heavenly Majesty;
And evermore among your mirth
Remember Christ and his blest birth.
The five and twentieth of December,
Great cause have we to remember,
In Bethlehem upon this morn
There was a blest Messiah born.
The night before that happy tide
The spotless Virgin, and her guide,
Were long time seeking up and down
To find out lodging in the town.
And mark how all things came to pass;
They in the lodgings so full was,
That they could find no room at all
But in the oxs sully stall.
Wherein the Virgin Mary mild
Was safe delivered of a Child
According to high Heavens decree
He was mans Saviour to be.
Near Bethlehem did shepherds keep
With watchful care their flocks of sheep
So, when an angel did appear,
Which filled all their hearts with fear.
" Prepare to go," the angel said,
" To Bethlehem, be not afraid
There shall you see, this blessed morn,
The heavenly babe, sweet Jesus, born."
With thankful hearts and joyful mind,
The shepherds went this babe to find
And as before the angel told,
They did our Saviour Christ behold.
Within a manger he was laid,
And by his side the Virgin stayed,
Attending on the Lord of life,
Being both mother, maid, and wife.
If choirs of angels did rejoice,
Well may mankind with heart and Voice
Sing praises to the God of Heaven,
For he to us his Son hath given.
Moreover, let us every one
Call unto mind, and think upon
His righteous life, and how he died,
That sinners might be justified.
Suppose, O man, that thou should be
In prison strong, condemnd to die,
And had no friends upon the earth
Would ransom you from cruel death.
Except you could some person find,
That unto you would be so kind,
As would you free redemption give,
Would die himself, that you might live.
Such was the act of Christ, when we
Were doomed to endless misery,
To save us from the gulph of woe,
Himself much pain did overflow.
While in this world he did remain
He did not spend one hour in vain;
To fasting, and to prayers divine,
He mostly did devote his time.
He in the Temple daily taught,
And many miracles he wrought;
Ho gave the blind their perfect sight,
And caused the lame to walk upright.
He cured the lepers of their evils,
And by his power he cast out devils;
He raised Lazarus from the dead,
And to the sick their health restored.
But yet, for all these wonders wrought,
The Jew his dire destruction brought;
And Judas, who did with him stay,
Did, with a kiss, his Lord betray.
Then he was taken by the Jews,
Who did him wrongfully accuse,
And pass the sentence then, that he
Should suffer death upon a tree.
They led him then unto the cross,
And thereupon he nailed was;
They scornfully did him deride,
And thrust a spear into his side.
Then never let us cease to sing,
With grateful hearts unto our King,
Who hath so freely shed his blood,
Only to do us sinners good.