United Church of God

The Message of "Taps"

You are here

The Message of "Taps"

Login or Create an Account

With a UCG.org account you will be able to save items to read and study later!

Sign In | Sign Up


He felt that the bugle call "Tattoo" or "Lights Out," which was then used to tell the soldiers to lie down to rest, was not right for that purpose. He called his bugler, Oliver W. Norton, and working together they revised the call to what is today known as "Taps." This haunting melody was quickly picked up by other units and eventually was made an official call by the military. Both the northern and southern armies used it.

In Boy Scout camps it is used for lights out. And it is still used by the U.S. military to signal the end of the day. But most of all we may associate this mournful call with military funerals. It was first used for this purpose soon after it was composed, and continues to the present. It brings a note of sadness whenever it is played. But did you know it really can be thought of as a song of joy, peace and promise?

Many versions of words have been written to the music. One I particularly like is:

"Day is done, gone the sun,

"From the lakes, from the hills, from the sky.

"All is well, safely rest, God is nigh.

"Fading light, dims the sight,

"And a star gems the night gleaming bright.

"From afar, drawing nigh, falls the night.

"Thanks and praise for our days

"Neath the sun, neath the stars, neath the sky.

"As we go, this we know, God is nigh."

Theses words show contentment and peace and remind us God is always near to us. Jesus tells us in Hebrews 13:5 (last part): "I will never leave you nor forsake you." Verse 6 continues: "So we may boldly say: 'The LORD is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?"

And "Taps" says, "All is well, safely rest, God is nigh!" UN