Scripture Verse

Make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Isaiah 40:3


George W. Warren

Words: Lau­ra S. Cop­en­ha­ver, 1915.

Music: Na­tion­al Hymn George W. War­ren, 1888 (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tunes:

Laura S. Copenhaver

Origin of the Hymn

In writing Heralds of Christ for one of the Summer Conferences at which I used to lecture, I was moved with a deep sense of unity with the builders of the King’s Highway in far lands, next door to me in America, and even with those great ones I had known as a child now gone one with the immortals by way of Africa and India…

Today in every land Christians are uniting to build a King­dom which shall have no geographical bounds, no limitations of race, no barriers of caste or class.


Heralds of Christ, who bear the King’s commands,
Immortal tidings in your mortal hands,
Pass on and carry swift the news you bring;
Make straight, make straight
The highway of the King.

Through desert ways, dark fen and deep morass,
Through jungles, sluggish seas, and mountain pass,
Build now the road, and falter not, nor stay;
Prepare across the earth the King’s highway.

Where once the twisting trail in darkness wound,
Let marching feet and joyous song resound,
Where burn the funeral pyres, and censers swing,
Make straight, make straight
The highway of the King.

Lord, give us faith and strength the road to build,
To see the promise of the day fulfilled,
When war shall be no more, and strife shall cease
Upon the highway of the Prince of Peace.