Archive for the ‘Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and Predecessors’ Category

Lord of the Hearts of Men   2 comments

Above:  All Saints’ Episcopal Church, Atlanta, Georgia, May 14, 2017

Image Source = Bill Monk, Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta

Original Text (1736) by Charles Coffin (1676-1749)

English Translation (1863) by James Russell Woodford (1820-1885)

Hymn Source = The Hymnal (1911), Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A.


Lord of the hearts of men,

Thou hast vouchsafed to bless,

From age to age, Thy chosen saints

With fruits of holiness.


Here faith and hope and love

Reign in sweet bond allied;

There, when this little day is o’er,

Shall love alone abide.


O love, O truth, O light!

Light never to decay!

O rest from thousand labors past!

O endless Sabbath day!


Here, amid cares and tears,

Bearing the seed we come;

There, with rejoicing hearts, we bring

Our harvest burdens home.


Give, mighty Lord Divine,

The fruits Thyself dost love;

Soon shalt Thou, from Thy judgment-seat,

Crown Thine own gifts above.

Christ, Above All Glory Seated   3 comments

Above:  Christ in Majesty

Image in the Public Domain

Hymn Source = The Hymnal (1911), Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A.

Anonymous Latin Text (500s or 600s)

English Translation (1852) by James Russell Woodford (1820-1885), Anglican Bishop of Ely (1873-1885)


Christ, above all glory seated,

King triumphant, strong to save,

Dying, Thou hast death defeated,

Buried, Thou hast spoiled the grave.


Thou art gone where now is given

What no mortal might could gain,

On the eternal throne of heaven

In Thy Father’s power to reign.


There Thy kingdoms all adore Thee,

Heaven above and earth below;

While the depths of hell before Thee

Trembling and amazed bow.


We, O Lord, with hearts adoring,

Follow Thee beyond the sky:

Hear our prayers Thy grace imploring,

Lift our souls to Thee on high;


So when Thou again in glory

On the clouds of heaven shalt shine,

We Thy flock may stand before Thee,

Owned for evermore as Thine.


Hail!  all hail!  In Thee confiding,

Jesus, Thee shall all adore,

In Thy Father’s might abiding

With one Spirit evermore.

Lord, As To Thy Dear Cross We Flee   2 comments

Icon of the Crucifixion Rublev

Above:  Icon of the Crucifixion, by Andrei Rublev

Image in the Public Domain

Hymn Source = The Hymnal (1895), Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A.

Text (1838) by John Hampden Gurney (1802-1862)


Lord, as to Thy dear cross we flee,

And plead to be forgiven,

So let Thy life our pattern be,

And from our souls for heaven.


Help us, through good report and ill,

Our daily cross to bear;

Like Thee, to do our Father’s will,

Our brethren’s griefs to share.


Let grace our selfishness expel,

Our earthliness refine;

And kindness in our bosoms dwell,

As free and true as Thine.


If joy shall at Thy bidding fly,

And grief’s dark day come on,

We, in our turn, would meekly cry,

“Father, Thy will be done.”


Should friends misjudge, or foes defame,

Or brethren faithless prove,

Then, like Thine own, be all our aim

To conquer them by love.


Kept peaceful in the midst of strife,

Forgiving and forgiven,

O may we lead the pilgrim’s life,

And follow Thee to heaven.

Break, New-Born Year, On Glad Eyes Break   2 comments

New Year's Eve

Image in the Public Domain

Hymn Source = The Hymnal (1895), Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A.

Text (1855) by Thomas Hornblower Gill (1819-1906)


Break, new-born year, on glad eyes break,

Melodious voices move;

On, rolling time, thou canst not make

The Father cease to love.


The parted year had winged feet;

The Saviour still doth stay:

The new year comes; but Spirit sweet,

Thou goest not away.


Our hearts in tears may oft run o’er;

But, Lord, Thy smile still beams:

Our sins are swelling evermore,

But pardoning grace still streams.


Lord, from this year more service win,

More glory, more delight:

O make its hours less sad with sin,

Its days with Thee more bright.


Then we may bless its precious things

If earthly cheer should come,

Or gladsome mount on angel wings

If Thou wouldst take us home.


O golden then the hours must be;

The year must needs be sweet;

Yes, Lord, with happy melody

Thine opening grace we greet.

We Come Unto Our Fathers’ God   1 comment

©Photo. R.M.N. / R.-G. OjŽda

©Photo. R.M.N. / R.-G. OjŽda

Above:  Saint John on Patmos

Image in the Public Domain

Hymn Source = The Hymnal (1895), Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A.

Text (November 22, 1868) by Thomas Hornblower Gill (1819-1906)

Gill worked on this text for most of St. Cecilia’s Day, 1868.  He reported that November 22, 1868 was “almost the most delightful day of my life.”


We come unto our fathers’ God:

Their Rock is our salvation;

The eternal arms, their dear abode,

We make our habitation;

We bring Thee, Lord, the praise they brought,

We seek Thee as Thy saints have sought

In every generation.


The fire Divine their steps that led

Still goeth bright before us,

The heavenly shield, around them spread,

Is still high holden o’er us;

The grace those sinners that subdued.

The strength those weaklings that renewed,

Doth vanquish, doth restore us.


The cleaving sins that brought them low

Are still our souls oppressing,

The tears that from their eyes did flow

Fall fast, our shame confessing;

As with Thee, Lord, prevailed their cry,

So our strong prayer ascends on high,

And bringeth down Thy blessing.


Their joy unto their Lord we bring,

Their song to us descendeth;

The Spirit who in them did sing

To us His music lendeth:

His song in them, in us, is one;

We raise it high, we send it on,–

The song that never endeth.


Ye saints to come, take up the strain,

The same sweet theme endeavor;

Unbroken be the golden chain!

Keep on the song for ever!

Safe in the same dear dwelling-place,

Rich with the same eternal grace,

Bless the same boundless Giver.

Dear Lord and Master Mine   1 comment

Two Yoked Oxen

Above:  Two Yoked Oxen, 1860

Image Source = Library of Congress

Reproduction Number = LC-USZ62-136943

Hymn Source = The Hymnal (1895), Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A.

Text (1866) by Thomas Hornblower Gill (1819-1906)


Dear Lord and Master, mine,

Thy happy servant see;

My Conqueror, with what joy Divine

Thy captive clings to Thee!


I love Thy yoke to wear,

To feel Thy gracious bands;

Sweetly restrained by Thy care,

And happy in Thy hands.


No bar would I remove,

No bond would I unbind;

Within the limits of Thy love

Full liberty I find.


I would not walk alone,

But still with Thee, my God;

At every step my blindness own,

And ask of Thee the road.


The weakness I enjoy

That casts me on Thy breast;

The conflicts that Thy strength employ

Make me Divinely blest.


Dear Lord and Master mine,

Still keep Thy servant true;

My Guardian and my Guide Divine,

Bring, bring Thy pilgrim through.


My Conqueror and my King,

Still keep me in Thy train;

And with Thee Thy glad captive bring

When Thou return’st to reign.

O Mean May Seem This House of Clay   1 comment

Christ Pantocrator Icon

Above:  Icon of Christ Pantocrator

Scan by Kenneth Randolph Taylor

Hymn Source = The Hymnal (1895), Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A.

Text (1850) by Thomas Hornblower Gill (1819-1906)


O mean may seem this house of clay,

Yet ’twas the Lord’s abode;

Our feet may mourn the thorny way,

Yet here Emmanuel trod.


This fleshly robe the Lord did wear,

This watch the Lord did keep,

These burdens sore the Lord did bear,

These tears the Lord did weep.


Our very frailty brings us near

Unto the Lord of heaven;

To every grief, to every tear,

Such glory strange is given.


But not this fleshly robe alone

Shall link us, Lord, to Thee;

Not only in the tear and groan

Shall the dear kindred be.


We shall be reckoned for Thine own

Because Thy heaven we share,

Because we sing around Thy throne,

And Thy bright raiment wear.


O mighty grace, our life to live,

To make our earth Divine:

O mighty grace, Thy heaven to give,

And lift our life to Thine.