Come, thou long expected Jesus! Born to set thy people freeAuthor: Charles Wesley
Published in 587 hymnals
Printable scores: PDF, SibeliusAudio files: MIDI
1. Come, thou long expected Jesus,
born to set thy people free;
from our fears and sins release us,
let us find our rest in thee.
Israel's strength and consolation,
hope of all the earth thou art;
dear desire of every nation,
joy of every longing heart.
2. Born thy people to deliver,
born a child and yet a King,
born to reign in us forever,
now thy gracious kingdom bring.
By thine own eternal spirit
rule in all our hearts alone;
by thine all sufficient merit,
raise us to thy glorious throne.
United Methodist Hymnal, 1989
|First Line:||Come, thou long expected Jesus! Born to set thy people free|
|Title:||Come, Thou long expected Jesus|
|Place of Origin:||Great Britain|
|Liturgical Use:||Prayer Songs|
|Article:||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus by Robin Knowles Wallace (from"The Hymns")|
st. 1=2 Cor. 4:14, Rev. 3:21
st. 3-4 =Isa. 61:1-2, Luke 4:18-19, Rom. 6:22
Charles Wesley (PHH 267) wrote this Advent hymn and printed it in his Hymns for the Nativity of our Lord (1744). Like so many of Wesley's texts, "Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus" alludes to one or more Scripture passages in virtually every phrase. The double nature of Advent is reflected in this text, in which we remember Christ's first coming even while praying for his return. Stanzas 1 and 2 recall Advent prophecies in the Old Testament; stanza 3 speaks of Christ's birth and kingdom, and stanza 4 is a prayer for Christ's rule in our hearts.
Advent; Christmas and Christmas carol/lesson worship services; worship that stresses the second coming.
--Psalter Hymnal Handbook
Come, Thou long expected Jesus. C. Wesley. [Christmas.] Appeared in Hymns for the Nativity of Our Lord, 1744, No. x., in 2 stanzas of 8 lines. The tract in which it appeared formed the first of those called the "Festival Hymns," which were subsequently published by Lampe in 1746. It was not included in the Wesleyan Hymn Book until the revised edition of 1875, No. 688, although it was given by Whitefield in his Collection, 1753, and later editions; by Madan, in his Psalms & Hymns, 1760; by Toplady, in his Psalms & Hymns, 1776; and by others. It is found in a great number of hymnals in Great Britain and America, specially those of the Church of England, and usually without alteration, as in Hymnal Companion, No. 96. A marked departure from this rule is, "Come, O Saviour, long expected," which appeared in Hall’s Mitre, 1836, in 4 stanzas of 4 lines, and again in the New Mitre, 1875, in 6 stanzas, the last two stanzas being Edward Osier's doxology, "Worship, honour, glory, blessing," from the older Mitre, 1836, No. 282. Other altered forms are, "Come, Thou Saviour, long expected," in Kennedy, 1863, No. 89, "Hail, Thou long expected Jesus," in the American Protestant Episcopal Hymnal, 1871. Original text, Poetical Works, 1868-72, vol. iv. p. 116.
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)
Come, Thou long expected Jesus, p. 252, ii. This is rendered into Latin by H. M. Macgill, 1876, No. 17, as "Veni Jesu ter Optate."
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology, Appendix, Part II (1907)
In one of his many “Coop’s Columns” on the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship website, former Calvin College chaplain, Dale Cooper, recalls a moment in which he was travelling home to his young family after spending the summer in Geneva. He was calling his wife from Chicago’s O’Hare airport to arrange his pick-up in Grand Rapids, when his then four-year-old son asked for the phone. Cooper writes, “His only words to me— a sigh, really: ’Daddy, when am I going to be where you are?’” (Cooper, “Coop’s Column – Spirit at Work: Guarantor”).
It is this sigh of longing that we express when we sing the words of Charles Wesley’s beautiful Advent hymn, “Come, Thou Long Expected Jesus.” For though we know that Christ goes with us and before us every day, we long for the day when we are with Him in all of the fullness and glory He will bring. We long for the day when we are with Him in a New Heaven and New Earth, when all things are made new. And just as a four-year-old crawls into his father’s arms after an extended absence, so too we long for the day when we will be at rest in Christ, enfolded in the embrace of our Savior.
Wesley’s original text consisted of two stanzas of eight lines each. In some hymnals, where the tune STUTTGART is used, those two verses are broken into four verses of four lines. The text is almost exactly the same in every hymnal that includes this hymn.
There are a few points of interest to note about Wesley’s text. First, he used a number of “false rhymes” when he got himself in a corner lyrically: “Jesus-release us,” “deliver-forever,” and “Spirit-merit.” Wesley was quite clever in these – one generally doesn’t notice them unless they’re pointed out. Second, Wesley uses a lot of repetition to make some key themes more obvious. For example, in the second stanza, he repeats the word “born” at the beginning of three consecutive lines to really drive home the idea of the incarnation.
Two tunes commonly accompany this text. The first is STUTTGART, a tune attributed to Christian F. Witt in the eighteenth century. Hymnologist Paul Westermeyer describes this tune as a “bold and sturdy congregational melody that stands on its own and bears repetition” (Westermeyer, Let the People Sing, 149). Note that this melody requires you to divide the original two stanzas into four. The second tune often used is HYFRYDOL, a Welsh tune composed by Rowland Prichard in 1830, and commonly associated with “Love Divine, All Loves Excelling.” Chris Tomlin’s Christmas album Glory in the Highest has an excellent a cappella rendition of the hymn to this tune. Singing the piece slowly and a cappella with the congregation is a powerful way of expressing the simple longing the text evokes.
Sandra McCracken and Derek Webb have written a new tune for the hymn with a one-line chorus: “Come thou long-awaited Emmanuel.” This is a folksy guitar-driven tune that also splits the two verses into four. I also recommend using the tune NETTLETON, most commonly sung with the text “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing.” Accompany with piano, violin, and a marching drum beat on the snares. With this tune it’s possible to repeat the first half of the first verse at the end, with just a sustained violin line, ending on the words, “Let us find our rest in thee.”
This is a beautiful hymn for Advent that expresses deeply the two-fold purpose of the Advent season – we remember the birth of Christ, and fiercely desire His coming again. Perhaps more than some Advent hymns, this text especially expresses our longing for Christ's second coming. You could pair this hymn with other songs of longing such as “Wait for the Lord” and “All who are Thirsty.” This would also be a powerful hymn with which to end a service, especially a service of lament over the brokenness in our world. After crying out and naming our concerns and heartbreaks before God, how beautiful to close with this simple prayer of longing that also speaks of our hope. There is no sense in asking for something if we do not believe we could ever get it. Even as we express our need for consolation, we do so in the knowledge that our God is a God who consoles. Ending the service with this hymn would be especially powerful if you repeated the first four lines of the first verse, ending your time of worship with “Let us find our rest in thee.”
Laura de Jong, Hymnary.org
|Instances (49)||First Line||Text Title||Refrain First Line||Authors||Composers||Meter||Scripture||Tune Title||Tune Key||Incipit||Languages||Publication Date|
|A New Hymnal for Colleges and School #212||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Stuttgart||1992|
|Baptist Hymnal 1991 #77||Come, Thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Rowland H. Prichard||188.8.131.52 D||Acts 13:32||HYFRYDOL||F Major||1991|
|Baptist Hymnal 2008 #176||Come, Thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Rowland H. Prichard||184.108.40.206 D||HYFRYDOL||F Major or modal||English||2008|
|Celebrating Grace Hymnal #83||Come, Thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Rowland H. Prichard||220.127.116.11 D||HYFRYDOL||F Major or modal||2010|
|Celebration Hymnal #244||Come, Thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Rowland H. Prichard; Robert Harkness||18.104.22.168 D||Isaiah 61:1||HYFRYDOL||F Major or modal||English||1997|
|Chalice Hymnal #125||Come, O long-expected Jesus||Come, O Long-expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Rowland H. Prichard||22.214.171.124 D||HYFRYDOL||F Major or modal||1995|
|Christian Worship: a Lutheran hymnal #6||Come, O long-expected Jesus||Come, O Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley, 1707-88||Unknown||126.96.36.199 D||ST. HILARY||D Major||1993|
|Christmas Favorites #44||Come, Thou long-expected Jesus!||Come, Thou Long Expected Jesus||[Come, Thou long-expected Jesus!]||2000|
|Church Hymnal, Fifth Edition #119||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||2000|
|Church Hymnary (4th ed.) #472||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Charles Wesley (1707-1788)||188.8.131.52||2 Corinthians 4:14; Colossians 1:27; Ephesians 2:12-13; Haggai 2:7; John 8:36; Luke 2:27-32; Matthew 1:21; Matthew 11:29; Psalm 34:4||STUTTGART||G Major or modal||English||2005|
|Common Praise (1998) #88||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-expected Jesus||Charles Wesley (1707-1788)||John W. Wilson (1905-1992); William Henry Havergal (1793-1870)||184.108.40.206||Matthew 1:1-17; Matthew 2:1-12; Luke 2:22-40; John 18:33-37; 2 Corinthians 1:2-11; Colossians 1:1-14; Matthew 1:1-17; Matthew 2:1-12; Luke 2:22-40; John 18:33-37; 2 Corinthians 1:2-11; Colossians 1:1-14||STUTTGART||1998|
|Complete Anglican Hymns Old & New #130||Come, thou long‑expected Jesus||Come, thou long‑expected Jesus||2000|
|Complete Mission Praise #102||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||220.127.116.11||2000|
|Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary #87||Come, Thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||C. Wesley, 1707-88||C. F. Witt, 1660-1716||18.104.22.168||STUTTGART||F Major or modal||English||1996|
|Evangelical Lutheran Worship #254||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley, 1707-1788||22.214.171.124 D||JEFFERSON||g minor||English||2006|
|Gather (3rd ed.) #403||Come, O long-expected Jesus||Come, O Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley, 1707-1788||Theophane Hytrek, OSF, 1915-1992||126.96.36.199 D||Isaiah 52:7; Isaiah 61:1-2; Haggai 2:7||JEFFERSON||g minor||2011|
|Gather Comprehensive #323||Come, O long expected Jesus||Come, O Long Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley, 1707-1788||Christian F. Witt, 1660-1716; Henry J. Gauntlett, 1805-1876||188.8.131.52||Isaiah 52:7; Isaiah 61:1-2; Haggai 2:7||STUTTGART||F Major or modal||English||1994|
|Gather Comprehensive, Second Edition #345||Come, O long expected Jesus||Come, O Long Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley, 1707-1788||William Henry Havergal, 1793-1870||184.108.40.206||Haggai 2:7||STUTTGART||F Major or modal||English||2004|
|Glory to God: the Presbyterian Hymnal #82||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Rowland Hugh Prichard; Ralph Vaughan Williams||220.127.116.11 D||Isaiah 9:6-7; Psalm 34:17-19; Isaiah 52:7; Isaiah 61:1-2; Daniel 7:13-14; Haggai 2:7; Malachi 3:1-4; Matthew 1:21-23; Matthew 2:2; Luke 1:32-35; Luke 2:1-7; Luke 2:32; Luke 4:18||HYFRYDOL||F Major or modal||English||2013|
|Glory to God: the Presbyterian Hymnal #83||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||18.104.22.168||Isaiah 9:6-7; Psalm 34:17-19; Isaiah 52:7; Isaiah 61:1-2; Daniel 7:13-14; Haggai 2:7; Malachi 3:1-4; Matthew 1:21-23; Matthew 2:2; Luke 1:32-35; Luke 2:1-7; Luke 2:32; Luke 4:18||STUTTGART||F Major or modal||English||2013|
|Hymnal 1982: according to the use of the Episcopal Church #66||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Charles Wesley, 1707-1788||William Henry Havergal, 1793-1870||22.214.171.124||STUTTGART||F Major or modal||English||1985|
|Hymns Ancient & Modern, New Standard Edition #31||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||126.96.36.199||1983|
|Hymns for Today's Church (2nd ed.) #52||Come, O long-expected Jesus||C. Wesley (1707-1788)||J. Stainer (1840-1901)||188.8.131.52||CROSS OF JESUS||G Major or modal||1987|
|Hymns Old and New: New Anglican #98||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||184.108.40.206||1996|
|Lead Me, Guide Me (2nd ed.) #238||Come, O long-expected Jesus||Come, O Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley, 1707-1788||William Henry Havergal, 1793-1870||220.127.116.11||Isaiah 52:7; Isaiah 61:1-2; Haggai 2:7||STUTTGART||F Major or modal||2012|
|Lift Up Your Hearts: psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs #56||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Henry J. Gauntlett; John W. Wilson||18.104.22.168||Haggai 2:7; Isaiah 61:1-2; Luke 4:18-19; 2 Corinthians 4:14; Revelation 3:21; Isaiah 61:1-2; Luke 4:18-19; Romans 6:22; Romans 6:22||STUTTGART||F Major or modal||2013|
|Lutheran Service Book #338||Come, Thou long-expected Jesus,||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley, 1707-88||22.214.171.124 D||Isaiah 9:6; Luke 1:67-75; Isaiah 61:1-2; 2 Peter 1:3-4||JEFFERSON||g minor||English||2006|
|Presbyterian Hymnal: hymns, psalms, and spiritual songs #1||Come, Thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||126.96.36.199||Haggai 2:7||STUTTGART||F Major||English||1990|
|Presbyterian Hymnal: hymns, psalms, and spiritual songs #2||Come, Thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Rowland Hugh Prichard||188.8.131.52 D||Haggai 2:7||HYFRYDOL||F Major||English||1990|
|Psalter Hymnal (Gray) #329||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||John Willson; Henry J. Gauntlett||184.108.40.206||Luke 1:46-55; Luke 1:68-79; Revelation 3:21; Revelation 3; Luke 2:40||STUTTGART||F Major||English||1987|
|Rejoice in the Lord #183||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||John Wilson; C. F. Witt||220.127.116.11||Haggai 2:7; Luke 2:25||STUTTGART||F Major||English||1985|
|Revival Hymns and Choruses #145||Come, Thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley, 1707-1788||Rowland H. Prichard, 1811-1887; Norman Johnson, 1928-||HYFRYDOL||F Major||English||1982|
|Seventh-day Adventist Hymnal #204||Come, Thou long-expected Jesus!||HYFRYDOL||1985|
|Sing Glory: Hymns, Psalms and Songs for a New Century #335||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||18.104.22.168||1999|
|Sing Joyfully #187||Come, Thou long expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Rowland H. Prichard; Ralph Vaughan Williams||[Come, Thou long expected Jesus]||F Major||English||1989|
|Sing With Me #83||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Henry Gauntlett; Robert Roth; John Wilson||22.214.171.124||Isaiah 61:1-2; Luke 4:18-19; Romans 6:22; 2 Corinthians 4:14; Revelation 3:21||STUTTGART||F Major||English||2006|
|Songs for Life #122||Come, thou long expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Henry Gauntlett; Robert Roth||126.96.36.199||Isaiah 9:6||STUTTGART||F Major||English||1995|
|The Christian Life Hymnal #74||Come, Thou long-expected Jesus||Hyfrydol||2006|
|The Christian Life Hymnal #75||Come, Thou long-expected Jesus||Stuttgart||2006|
|The Covenant Hymnal: a worshipbook #135||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley, 1707-1788||Christian F. Witt, 1660-1716; Henry J. Gauntlett, 1805-1876||188.8.131.52||Haggai 2:7; Malachi 3:1||STUTTGART||F Major or modal||1996|
|The Hymnal for Worship and Celebration #124||Come, Thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Rowland H. Prichard; Robert Harkness||184.108.40.206 D||HYFRYDOL||G Major or modal||English||1986|
|The New Century Hymnal #122||Come, O long-expected Jesus||Come, O Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Christian F. Witt, 1600-1716||220.127.116.11||STUTTGART||F Major or modal||1995|
|The United Methodist Hymnal #196||Come, thou long expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Rowland H. Prichard||18.104.22.168 D||HYFRYDOL||F Major||English||1989|
|The Worshiping Church #135||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||Rowland H. Prichard; Ralph Vaughan Williams||22.214.171.124 D||Hebrews 4:9-11; Isaiah 9:6; Haggai 2:7; Matthew 1:21; Matthew 2:6; Matthew 11:28; Luke 2:32; Revelation 22:20||HYFRYDOL||F Major||English||1990|
|Together in Song: Australian Hymn Book II #272||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||126.96.36.199||1999|
|Trinity Hymnal (Rev. ed.) #196||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley; Mark E. Hunt||Rowland Hugh Pritchard||188.8.131.52 D||Haggai 2:7; Luke 2:25||HYFRYDOL||F Major||English||1990|
|Voices United: The Hymn and Worship Book of The United Church of Canada #2||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley||184.108.40.206||STUTTGART||F Major or modal||English||1996|
|Worship and Rejoice #153||Come, thou long-expected Jesus||Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus||Charles Wesley, 1707-1788||Rowland H. Prichard, 1811-1887; Ralph Vaughan Williams, 1872-1958||220.127.116.11 D||Hebrews 4:9-11; Matthew 1:21; Colossians 3:15; Haggai 2:7; Luke 2:32; Isaiah 9:6; Matthew 11:28; Revelation 22:20; Matthew 2:6||HYFRYDOL||F Major or modal||2001|
|Worship in Song: A Friends Hymnal #53||Come, thou long expected Jesus||Hyfrydol||1996|