For ever with the Lord

Full Text

"For ever with the Lord!"
Amen; so let it be;
Life from the dead is in that word,
'Tis immortality.

Here in the body pent,
Absent from Him I roam,
Yet nightly pitch my moving tent
A day's march nearer home.

My Father's house on high,
Home of my soul, how near,
At times, to faith's foreseeing eye
Thy golden gates appear!

Ah! then my spirit faints
To reach the land I love,
The bright inheritance of saints,
Jerusalem above.

Yet clouds will intervene,
And all my prospect flies,
Like Noah's dove, I flit between
Rough seas and stormy skies.

Anon the clouds depart,
The winds and waters cease,
While sweetly o'er my gladden'd heart,
Expands the bow of peace.

Beneath its glowing arch,
Along the hallow'd ground,
I see cherubic armies march,
A camp of fire around.

I hear at morn and even,
At noon and midnight hour,
The choral harmonies of heaven,
Earth's Babel-tongues o'erpower.

Then, then I feel that He,
(Remember'd or forgot,)
The Lord, is never far from me,
Though I perceive Him not.

In darkness as in light,
Hidden alike from view,
I sleep, I wake, as in His sight,
Who looks all nature through.

All that I am, have been,
All that I yet may be,
He sees at once, as He hath seen,
And shall for ever see.

How can I meet His eyes?
Mine on the cross I cast,
And own my life a Saviour's prize,
Mercy from first to last.

"For ever with the Lord!"
--Father, if 'tis Thy will,
The promise of that faithful word,
Even here to me fulfil.

Be thou at my right hand,
Then can I never fail;
Uphold Thou me, and I shall stand,
Fight, and I must prevail.

So when my latest breath
Shall rend the veil in twain,
By death I shall escape from death,
And life eternal gain.

Knowing as I am known,
How shall I love that word,
And oft repeat before the Throne,
"For ever with the Lord!"

Then, though the soul enjoy
Communion high and sweet,
While worms this body must destroy,
Both shall in glory meet.

The trump of final doom
Will speak the selfsame word,
And Heaven's voice thunder through the tomb,
"For ever with the Lord!"

The tomb shall echo deep
That death-awakening sound;
The saints shall hear it in their sleep,
And answer from the ground.

Then, upward as they fly,
That resurrection-word,
Shall be their shout of victory,
"For ever with the Lord!"

That resurrection-word,
That shout of victory,
Once more,--"For ever with the Lord!"
Amen; so let it be!

Sacred Poems and Hymns. 1854

Author: James Montgomery

Montgomery, James, son of John Montgomery, a Moravian minister, was born at Irvine, Ayrshire, Nov. 4, 1771. In 1776 he removed with his parents to the Moravian Settlement at Gracehill, near Ballymena, county of Antrim. Two years after he was sent to the Fulneck Seminary, Yorkshire. He left Fulneck in 1787, and entered a retail shop at Mirfield, near Wakefield. Soon tiring of that he entered upon a similar situation at Wath, near Rotherham, only to find it quite as unsuitable to his taste as the former. A journey to London, with the hope of finding a publisher for his youthful poems ended in failure; and in 1792 he was glad to leave Wath for Shefield to join Mr. Gales, an auctioneer, bookseller, and printer of the Sheffield Register newspap… Go to person page >

Notes

For ever with the Lord. J. Montgomery. [Heaven anticipated.] First published in The Amethyst, an annual, in 1835, and again in the author's Poet’s Portfolio, in the same year, p. 233, in 22 stanzas of 4 lines, unequally divided into two parts, and headed, "At Home in Heaven, 1 Thess. iv. 17." It was repeated in his Poetical Works, 1841, p. 267; and in his Original Hymns, 1853, p. 231. In this last the second stanza of pt. ii. is omitted. Numerous centos from this hymn are in common use, all except four beginning with stanza i., but varying in length and arrangement. In America especially these centos have attained great popularity. The cento "Beneath the star-lit arch," in Beecher's Plymouth Collection, 1855, is composed of stanzas vii., xii., xiii. and xxi. slightly altered. In Martineau's Hymns, &c, 1840 and 1873, there are also two centos from this hymn: (1) “In darkness as in light"; and (2) "My Father's house on high," and in the Presbyterian Psalms & Hymns for the Worship of God, Richmond, U.S.A., 1867, a third, (3) “My thirsty spirit faints."

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)

Tune

NEARER HOME (Woodbury)


SCHUMANN

SCHUMANN is one of many hymn tunes arranged by Lowell Mason (PHH 96). He first published the arrangement in Cantica Laudis (1850), a collection he edited with George J. Webb (PHH 559). First called WHITE, the tune was marked "Arr. from Schumann" and was thus ascribed to the German composer Robert A.…

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Timeline

Instances

Instances (1 - 8 of 8)Text InfoTune InfoTextScoreFlexScoreAudioPage Scan
Baptist Hymnal 1991 #529TextScoreAudioPage Scan
Christian Worship: a Lutheran hymnal #213TextPage Scan
Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary #552TextPage Scan
Small Church Music #2215Audio
Small Church Music #5631Audio
The Christian Harmony: in the seven-syllable character note system of music;... 2010 Revised Edition #49
The Cyber Hymnal #1667TextScoreAudio
Welsh and English Hymns and Anthems #49
Include 541 pre-1979 instances



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