The "Adeste Fideles" (5th S. xi. 265, 298, 331, 372.)—The version of this hymn sung at Margaret Chapel, London, during Mr. Oakley's ministry, is certainly not the earliest English translation that was made for use in a Church of England congregation. I remember the following version—said at the time to have been made by a lady—being used in a church in Guernsey about the year 1820, certainly not later than in 1823 :—
Exulting, triumphing, come from every nation;
Come hither to Bethlehem your offerings bring;
Come and behold one born for your salvation,—
O, come let us adore Him (ter), Christ our King!
Foretold by the prophets in the sacred pages,
A virgin, O wonder ! brings forth a child;
Hail, Son of God, expected through long ages,—
O, come let us adore Him (ter), Saviour mild !
Then welcome the day which gave us such a treasure,
Redemption to mortals this day affords;
Jesus is born, our joy shall know no measure,—
O, come let us adore Him (ter), Lord of Lords!
Let praises by angels, by mankind be given,
Let praises unfeigned for such love ne'er end;
Glory to God resound from earth to heaven,—
O, come let us adore Him (ter), sinners' Friend!"
This translation cannot boast of being very literal, but it is rhythmical and devoid of the stiffness of most of the other versions, and I can only wonder that it never became popular.