I have set watchmen upon thy walls, O Jerusalem, which shall never hold their peace day nor night: ye that make mention of the Lord, keep not silence. Isaiah 62:6
Words: Samuel J. Stone, 1874. Stone wrote this hymn for the Church Defence Institution, and it was issued as a leaflet with music for use at Church Defence meetings. It also appeared in Stone’s Knight of Intercession, third edition, 1874, with the heading
Battle Hymn of Church Defence and
Dedicated to the
Church Society of St. Paul’s Haggerston.
Round the sacred city gather
Egypt, Edom, Babylon;
All the warring hosts of error,
Sworn against her, move as one:
Vain the leaguer! her foundations
Are upon the holy hills,
And the love of the Eternal
All her stately temple fills.
Get thee, watchman, to the rampart!
Gird thee, warrior, with thy sword!
Be ye strong as ye remember
That amidst you is the Lord:
Like the night mists from the valley,
These shall vanish one by one,
Egypt’s malice, Edom’s envy,
And the hate of Babylon.
But be true, ye sons and daughters,
Lest the peril be within:
Watch to prayer, lest, while ye slumber,
Stealthy foemen enter in:
Safe the mother and the children,
In their will and love be strong,
While their loyal hearts go singing
Prayer and praise for battle song.
Church of God! if we forget thee
Let His blessings fail our hand,
When our love shall not prefer thee
Let His love forget our land—
Nay! to thee shall we be steadfast,
Though the world’s foundations shake,
Love of thee is love for ever,
Love of thee for Jesus’ sake.
Church of Christ! upon thy banner,
Lo, His passion’s awful sign;
By that seal of His redemption
Thou art His, and He is thine:
From the depth of His atonement
Flows thy sacramental tide:
From the height of His ascension
Flows the grace which is thy guide.
God the Spirit dwells within thee,
His society divine,
His the living Word thou keepest,
His thy apostolic line.
Ancient prayer and song liturgics,
Creeds that change not to the end,
As His gift we have received them,
As His charge we will defend.
To the Father, Spirit, Son,
In whose will the Church at warfare
With the Church at rest is one;
So to Thee we sing in union,
God in earth and Heav’n adored,
Holy, holy, holy Lord.