Here are my completed Hymnals:

Presbyterian 1955 Hymnbook:

Episcopal 1940 Hymnal: 

Broadman 1940 Hymnal:

Lutheran 1941 Hymnal:

Methodist 1939 Hymnal:

Pilgrim 1935 Hymnal:

Here are my new projects:

Choice Hymns of the Faith 1945

Now Sings My Soul, New Songs for the Lord by: Linda Bonney Olin:

J S Bach Riemenschneider 371 Harmonized Chorales


Dictionary of Hymnology:

Brightest and Best of the Sons of the Morning (Morning Star)

Text by: Reginald Heber 1811

Tune: Morning Star by James P Harding 1892

Star in the East from: Southern Harmony    

  1. Brightest and best of the sons of the morning,
    dawn on our darkness and lend us thine aid;
    star of the east, the horizon adorning,
    guide where our infant Redeemer is laid.

    2. Cold on his cradle the dewdrops are shining;
    low lies his head with the beasts of the stall;
    angels adore him in slumber reclining,
    Maker and Monarch and Savior of all!

    3. Say, shall we yield him, in costly devotion,
    odors of Edom and offerings divine?
    Gems of the mountain and pearls of the ocean,
    myrrh from the forest, or gold from the mine?

    4. Vainly we offer each ample oblation,
    vainly with gifts would his favor secure;
    Richer by far is the heart’s adoration,
    dearer to God are the prayers of the poor.

    5. Hail the blest morn when the great mediator
    Down from the regions of glory descends.
    Shepherds, go worship the Babe in the manger;
    Lo! for His guard the bright angels attend.

Reginald Heber was born at Malpas, England April 4, 1783; educated at Brasenose College at Oxford; he was made Vicar at his father’s church in Hodnet in 1807; and made Bishop of Calcutta in 1823; he died in Trichinoploy, India (now known as Tiruchirappalli) on April 3, 1826.

The opening line: “Brightest and best of the sons of the morning” requires some careful thinking and examination. Both Jesus and Satan are referred to as a “morning star” in Scripture.

Satan in Isaiah 4:12:   “How you are fallen from heaven, O Day Star, son of Dawn! How you are cut down to the ground, you who laid the nations low!

And Jesus in Revelations 22:16: 16  “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to testify to you about these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.”

Satan was a “Day Star” or a “Morning Star” in some translations, yet he was just another created being. An exalted created being, enjoying the presence of God, but just another piece of God’s creation. However, due to his pride and jealousy he was cut down and banished from God’s presence.

Jesus, however, is the “Bright Morning Star,” the Star which out shines all others and from which all light emanates. This is the Star which chose to be humble and to give up His glory in order to redeem His creation. It is this star which is the dawn to our darkness and leads us to the cradle of our redeemer.

The angels who declared to the social outcasts, the shepherds minding their sheep at night, “Do you have any idea what has just happened??!!” The angels are keeping watch over the sleeping child, surrounded by a vanguard of cattle. The Maker and Monarch of us all is sleeping in a feeding trough! The Glory of Heaven has come down and taken on the very weight of our flesh!

Within the gifts brought to Him, the entire world brings gifts. Perfume from Edom, gems from the mountains, pearls from the ocean, myrrh from the forest, and gold from the mines. All of this is vain for the only gift desired is an obedient heart.

As James says: James 1:27  Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.