Forth in Thy Name, O Lord, I Go

Full Text

1 Forth in thy name, O Lord, I go,
my daily labour to pursue;
thee, only thee, resolved to know,
in all I think or speak or do.

2 The task thy wisdom hath assigned
O let me cheerfully fulfil;
in all my works thy presence find,
and prove thy good and perfect will.

3 Preserve me from my calling's snare,
and hide my simple heart above,
above the thorns of choking care,
the gilded baits of worldly love.

4 Thee may I set at my right hand,
whose eyes my inmost substance see,
and labour on at thy command,
and offer all my works to thee.

5 Give me to bear thy easy yoke,
and every moment watch and pray,
and still to things eternal look,
and hasten to thy glorious day;

6 For thee delightfully employ
whate'er thy bounteous grace hath given,
and run my course with even joy,
and closely walk with thee to heaven.

Source: Ancient and Modern: hymns and songs for refreshing worship #476

Author: Charles Wesley

Charles Wesley, M.A. was the great hymn-writer of the Wesley family, perhaps, taking quantity and quality into consideration, the great hymn-writer of all ages. Charles Wesley was the youngest son and 18th child of Samuel and Susanna Wesley, and was born at Epworth Rectory, Dec. 18, 1707. In 1716 he went to Westminster School, being provided with a home and board by his elder brother Samuel, then usher at the school, until 1721, when he was elected King's Scholar, and as such received his board and education free. In 1726 Charles Wesley was elected to a Westminster studentship at Christ Church, Oxford, where he took his degree in 1729, and became a college tutor. In the early part of the same year his religious impressions were much deepene… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Forth in thy Name, O Lord, I go
Title: Forth in Thy Name, O Lord, I Go
Author: Charles Wesley (1749)
Language: English
Copyright: Public Domain


Scripture References:
st. 2 = Ps. 139:2
Rom. 12:1-2
st. 3 = Ps. 16:8
st. 4 = Matt 11:30
Matt 26:41

Charles Wesley (PHH 267) wrote the text of this hymn and published it in Hymns and Sacred Poems (1749) as a hymn "for believers." It was entitled "Before Work."

The hymn originally had six stanzas. Following John Wesley's example in his Collection (1780), most modern hymnals, including the Psalter Hymnal, omit the original stanza 3.

Recognizing the significance of daily work for the Christian, Charles Wesley wrote and sang hymns not only for Sunday but also for daily use. The text of this hymn reflects Wesley's views about work: we are to do our work in the name of the Lord (st. 1); God calls us to our work in obedience to his will (st. 2); we may offer all our work to God (st. 3); as we journey from this life to glory, we may always view our work as part of the coming of God's kingdom (st. 4); we may gratefully use all God's gifts for his glory (st. 5).

Liturgical Use:
Close of worship; worship services in which labor is stressed (Labor Day Sunday); springtime prayer services for crops and industry; New Year's Day; ordination; profession of faith; commissioning services; when used during the Easter season, substitute an "Alleluia" for the final "Amen."

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook, 1988
Forth in Thy Name, O Lord, I go. C. Wesley. [Morning.] First published in Hymns and Sacred Poems, 1749, vol. i. p. 246. "For Believers Before Work," No. 144, in 6 stanzas of 4 lines. It was included in the Wesleyan Hymn Book, in 1780, with the omission of stanza iii. It has come into most extensive use both in Great Britain and America. In common with many of the older hymns it has undergone alterations at various hands. The line which has given the greatest trouble to the compilers is, "And prove Thy acceptable will." This has undergone many changes, but that given in the Leeds Hymn Book, in 1853, "And prove Thy good and perfect will," has been received by common consent as the best and most musical reading. Original text, Poetical Works, 1868-72, vol. v. p. 50. The doxology in Hymns Ancient & Modern and some other collections is not in the original. In 1767, R. Conyers gave it in his Collection as "Forth in Thy strength, O Lord, we go," but this alteration has passed out of use.

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)




Derived from the fourth piano piece in Robert A. Schumann's Nachtstücke, Opus 23 (1839), CANONBURY first appeared as a hymn tune in J. Ireland Tucker's Hymnal with Tunes, Old and New (1872). The tune, whose title refers to a street and square in Islington, London, England, is often matched to Haver…

Go to tune page >



General Settings
Stanza Selection
Voice Selection
Text size:
Music size:
Transpose (Half Steps):
Contacting server...
Contacting server...

Questions? Check out the FAQ
This is a preview of your FlexScore.
The Cyber Hymnal #1588
  • Adobe Acrobat image (PDF)
  • Noteworthy Composer score (NWC)
  • XML score (XML)
The United Methodist Hymnal #438


Instances (1 - 33 of 33)Text InfoTune InfoTextScoreFlexScoreAudioPage Scan
Ancient and Modern: hymns and songs for refreshing worship #476Text
Christian Worship: a Lutheran hymnal #456Text
Church Hymnal, Fifth Edition #567
Church Hymnary (4th ed.) #529TextPage Scan
Common Praise (1998) #467TextPage Scan
Common Praise: A new edition of Hymns Ancient and Modern #430Page Scan
Complete Anglican Hymns Old and New #192
Complete Mission Praise #159
Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary #506TextPage Scan
Hymns Ancient & Modern, New Standard Edition #239
Hymns and Psalms: a Methodist and ecumenical hymn book #381
Hymns for Today's Church (2nd ed.) #306
Hymns Old and New (Rev. and Enl.) #201
Hymns Old and New: New Anglican #143
Lutheran Service Book #854Text
Lutheran Worship #380Text
Moravian Book of Worship #638Text
Psalter Hymnal (Gray) #324Text InfoTune InfoTextAudio
Rejoice in the Lord #79TextPage Scan
Sing Glory: Hymns, Psalms and Songs for a New Century #623
Singing the Faith #550
Small Church Music #613Audio
Small Church Music #1392Audio
Small Church Music #2471Audio
The Covenant Hymnal: a worshipbook #670
The Cyber Hymnal #1588TextScoreAudio
The New English Hymnal #235
The United Methodist Hymnal #438TextScoreFlexScoreAudioPage Scan
The Worshiping Church #397TextAudio
Together in Song: Australian hymn book II #571
Voices United: The Hymn and Worship Book of The United Church of Canada #416TextPage Scan
Worship and Rejoice #718TextAudioPage Scan
生命聖詩 - Hymns of Life, 1986 #345
Include 265 pre-1979 instances