Hymn Story

LetAll Mortal Flesh Keep Silence

Hymn lists

by book of Bible

The origins of this hymn are lost in the haze of antiquity.  It probably comes from the fifth century and probably originated in the Orthodox churches —but those are simply our best guesses.

But regardless of its origins, it continues to inspire us today.  The first verse calls us to silent meditation—to pondering Jesus’ incarnation.  The second verse acknowledges Jesus as “King of kings, yet born of Mary”—what a mystery it is that a baby born in such ordinary circumstances could be King of kings and Lord of Lords.  The third verse celebrates the “host of heaven”—God’s angels, tasked with clearing away the darkness and bringing in the light.  And the last verse celebrates the cherubim who endlessly cry,

“Alleluia, alleluia, Alleluia, Lord most high!”  (NOTE:  Check your hymnal to make sure that the verses in it track with the verses noted above.)

— Copyright 2006, Richard Niell Donovan