Heavenly Father, sovereign Lord, ever faithful to thy word

Heavenly Father, sovereign Lord, ever faithful to thy word

Author: Charles Wesley
Tune: PLEYEL'S HYMN
Published in 6 hymnals

Printable scores: PDF, MusicXML
Audio files: MIDI

Full Text

Charles Wesley's version:

1. Heavenly Father, sovereign Lord,
Ever faithful to Thy word,
Humbly we our seal set to,
Testify that Thou art true.
Lo! for us the wilds are glad,
All in cheerful green arrayed,
Opening sweets they all disclose,
Bud and blossom as the rose.

2. Hark! the wastes have found a voice,
Lonely deserts now rejoice,
Gladsome hallelujahs sing,
All around with praises ring.
Lo! abundantly they bloom,
Lebanon is hither come,
Carmel’s stores the heavens dispense,
Sharon’s fertile excellence.

3. See, these barren souls of ours
Bloom, and put forth fruits and flowers,
Flowers of Eden, fruits of grace,
Peace, and joy, and righteousness.
We behold (the abjects we!)
Christ, the incarnate Deity,
Christ, in whom Thy glories shine,
Excellence of strength divine.

4. Ye that tremble at his frown,
He shall lift your hands cast down;
Christ, who all your weakness sees,
He shall prop your feeble knees.
Ye of fearful hearts, be strong;
Jesus will not tarry long;
Fear not lest his truth should fail,
Jesus is unchangeable.

5. God, your God, shall surely come,
Quell your foes, and seal their doom,
He shall come and save you too;
We, O Lord, have found thee true!
Blind we were, but now we see,
Deal; we hearken now to thee,
Dumb, for thee our tongues employ,
Lame, and, lo! we leap for joy.

6. Faint we were, and parched with drought,
Water at Thy word gushed out,
Streams of grace our thirst repress,
Starting from the wilderness;
Still we gasp Thy grace to know,
Here for ever let it flow,
Make the thirsty land a pool;
Fix the Spirit in our soul.

Benjamin Williams' version, alt.

1. Heavenly Father, sovereign Lord,
Be Thy glorious name adored!
Lord, Thy mercies never fail;
Hail, celestial Goodness, hail!

2. Though unworthy of Thine ear,
Deign our humble songs to hear;
Purer praise we hope to bring,
When around Thy throne we sing.

3. While on earth ordained to stay,
Guide our footsteps in Thy way,
Till we come to dwell with Thee,
Till we all Thy glory see.

4. When, with angel harps again,
We will wake a nobler strain;
There, in joyful songs of praise,
Our triumphant songs we raise.

Original version (omitting repetitions):

1. Grateful notes and numbers bring;
While Jehovah’s praise we sing:
Holy, holy, holy, Lord!
Be Thy glorious name adored.

2. Men on earth, and saints above,
Sing the great Redeemer’s love:
Lord, Thy mercies never fail!
Hail, celestial goodness, hail!

3. Though unworthy, Lord, Thine ear,
Our humble hallelujahs hear;
Purer praise hope to bring
When with saints we stand and sing.

4. Lead us to that blissful state,
Where Thou reignest supremely great;
Look with pity from Thy throne,
And send Thy Holy Spirit down.

5. While on earth ordained to stay
Guide our footsteps in Thy way;
Till we come to reign with Thee,
And all Thy glorious greatness see.

6. Then with angels we’ll again
Wake a louder, louder strain;
There, in joyful songs of praise,
We’ll our grateful voices raise.

7. There no tongue shall silent be:
There all shall join sweet harmony;
That through Heaven’s all spacious round,
Thy praise, O God, may ever sound!

Original version:
Grateful notes and numbers bring;
While Jehovah’s praise we sing:
Holy, holy, holy, Lord!
Be Thy glorious name adored.

Men on earth, and saints above,
Sing the great Redeemer’s love:
Lord, Thy mercies never fail!
Hail, celestial goodness, hail!

Though unworthy, Lord, Thine ear,
Our humble hallelujahs hear;
Purer praise hope to bring
When with saints we stand and sing.

Lead us to that blissful state,
Where Thou reignest supremely great;
Look with pity from Thy throne,
And send Thy Holy Spirit down.

While on earth ordained to stay
Guide our footsteps in Thy way;
Till we come to reign with Thee,
And all Thy glorious greatness see.

Then with angels we’ll again
Wake a louder, louder strain;
There, in joyful songs of praise,
We’ll our grateful voices raise.

There no tongue shall silent be:
There all shall join sweet harmony;
That through Heaven’s all spacious round,
Thy praise, O God, may ever sound!



Source: The Cyber Hymnal #2352

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: Heavenly Father, sovereign Lord, ever faithful to thy word
Author: Charles Wesley

Notes

Heavenly Father, Sovereign Lord, Ever faithful, &c. C. Wesley. [Promised Happiness.] Appeared in Hymns & Sacred Poems, 1740, as a paraphrase of Isaiah xxxv., in 20 stanzas of 4 lines (Poetical Works, 1868-72, vol. i. p. 290). The hymn, "Faint the earth, and parched with drought," in Martineau's Hymns, &c, 1873, and a few American collections, is composed of stanzas xi., xii., iii., v. (in the order named), very much altered. In the Wesleyan Hymn Book, 1780, No. 339, the original hymn was given in two parts, Pt: ii. beginning:—"Where the ancient dragon lay." In this form it is retained in the revised edition, 1875, and is also found in other collections.

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)

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The Cyber Hymnal #2352
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