Christ Upon the Mountain Peak

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Source: Lift Up Your Hearts: psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs #130

Author: Brian A. Wren

Brian Wren (b. 1936) is Emeritus Professor of Worship, Columbia Theological Seminary, Decatur, Georgia. He is a writer, preacher, worship and workshop leader, and internationally published hymn-poet, with entries in most recent denominational hymnals in North America, Britain and Australia. Some of his hymn-poems have been translated into Finnish, French, Japanese, Mandarin, Spanish and Korean. Brian holds undergraduate and doctoral degrees from Oxford University. He is a Minister of the United Reformed Church (UK). His publications include What Language Shall I Borrow? - God-Talk in Worship: A Male Response to Feminist Theology (1989 and 2009), Praying Twice: The Music and Words of Congregational Song (2000), Advent, Christmas and Epiphany… Go to person page >


Scripture References:
st. = Luke 9:28-36

Brian Wren (PHH 311) wrote this text at Mansfield College, Oxford, England, in 1962. Published in the British supplement 100 Hymns for Today (1959), "Christ, upon the Mountain Peak" was the second hymn text that Wren wrote.

The text is based on the gospel story of Christ's transfiguration from Matthew 17:1-8, Mark 9:2-8, and Luke 9:28-36. Powerfully poetic, the text not only captures something of the awe in the event–we share in the awe as we sing "Alleluia"–but also presents a cosmic picture: the saints, angels, prophets, all nations, and the whole creation bring praise to the true Son of God! In the style of the transfiguration celebration in the Eastern Orthodox Church, the entire focus is on Christ, the Alpha and Omega (st. 4).

Liturgical Use:
In worship services that focus on the transfiguration (at the end of the Epiphany season or early in Lent); useful at other occasions that emphasize the cosmic awe proper before God's beloved Son.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook



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