481. Christ, Whose Glory Fills the Skies

1 Christ, whose glory fills the skies,
Christ, the true and only Light,
Sun of Righteousness, arise,
triumph o'er the shades of night;
Dayspring from on high, be near;
Daystar, in my heart appear.

2 Dark and cheerless is the morn
unaccompanied by thee;
joyless is the day's return
till thy mercy's beams I see,
till they inward light impart,
glad my eyes and warm my heart.

3 Visit, then, this soul of mine,
pierce the gloom of sin and grief;
fill me, Radiancy divine,
scatter all my unbelief;
more and more thyself display,
shining to the perfect day!

Text Information
First Line: Christ, whose glory fills the skies
Title: Christ, Whose Glory Fills the Skies
Author: Charles Wesley (1740)
Publication Date: 1987
Meter: 77 77 77
Scripture: Psalm 27; Malachi 4:2; Luke 1:68-79; John 8:12; 2 Peter 1:19; 2 Peter 1
Topic: Comfort & Encouragement; Invitation; Redemption
Language: English
Tune Information
Name: LUX PRIMA
Composer: Charles F. Gounod (1872)
Meter: 77 77 77
Key: F Major


Text Information:

Scripture References:
st. 1 =John 8:12, 2 Pet. 1:19, Luke 1:78, Mal. 4:2, Ps.27:1

Written by the great hymn writer Charles Wesley (PHH 267), this text was published in three stanzas in Hymns and Sacred Poems, compiled in 1740 by Charles Wesley and his" brother John. James Montgomery called it "one of Charles Wesley's loveliest progeny.”

Titled "Morning Hymn" by Wesley, it is unusual in that it does not contain the customary reference to the previous night's rest or to the work and dangers of the day ahead. The text begins by placing the focus entirely on Christ, the "light of the world," the sun of Righteousness who rises with healing in his wings"; he is the "Dayspring" and "Daystar." Thus the "light of Christ" is to fill our lives and lead us forward "to the perfect day."

Liturgical Use:
As a morning hymn during the Easter vigil service and during Advent; other services that have as their theme Christ as "light."

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

Tune Information:

French romanticist composer Charles F. Gounod (PHH 165) wrote LUX PRIMA, which means "first light" in Latin. When the Franco-Prussian War broke out in 1870, Gounod left his native Paris and settled in England for five years. This sturdy tune was published in the Scottish Hymnary in 1872.

It uses several melodic sequences and builds to a climax in its last line. Sing in parts throughout with moderate to strong accompaniment. RATISBON, the suggested alternate tune, is found with this text in many other hymnals, but its isorhythmic (all equal rhythms) shape doesn't fit this text as well as Gounod's livelier LUX PRIMA.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook


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