218. Rain Down, Ye Heavens, Eternal Bliss

Rain down, ye heav’ns, eternal bliss!
The Cherub-cloud today
Bears JESUS where His Father is,
Along the starry way!

Sundered of old were Heaven and Earth:
But Thou, Incarnate King!
Hast made them one by that Thy Birth,
And this Thy triumphing.

‘Thy victor-raiment, wherefore red?
What mean the marks of pain
That print Thy form?’—the Angels said,
The ascending Monarch’s train.

Very Oblation, by the scourges torn!
Nailed to the bitter Cross, O Virgin-born!
As once the Prophet from the monster’s maw,
So now Thy love, accomplishing the Law,
Adam from utter death to perfect Life would draw.

Vanities earthly in earth will we lay,
Ashes with ashes, the dust with the clay:
Lift up the heart, and the eye, and the love,
Lift up thyself, to the regions above:
Since the Immortal hath entered of late,
Mortals may pass at the heavenly gate.

Stand we on Olivet: mark Him ascend,
Whose is the glory and might without end;
There, with His own ones, the Giver of Good
Blessing them once more, a little while stood.
“Nothing can part us,—nor distance, nor foes,
Lo! I am for you, and who can oppose?”

Translator: John Mason Neale (1862)
Author: Joseph of the Studium, Saint, 762-832

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