Scripture Verse

He is before all things, and by Him all things consist. Colossians 1:17

Introduction

portrait
Daniel A. McGregor
(1847–1890)

Words: Dan­i­el A. Mc­Gre­gor, 1889. This work is al­so known as The Mc­Mas­ter Hymn be­cause it is the of­fi­cial hymn of Mc­Mas­ter Un­i­ver­si­ty, Ham­il­ton, On­tar­io, Ca­na­da. Mc­Gre­gor is thought to have writ­ten these words dur­ing Ad­vent 1889. His fa­mi­ly do­nat­ed the orig­in­al man­us­cript to Mc­Mas­ter Un­i­ver­si­ty in 1921.

Music: Fran­con­ia (Hast­ings) Tho­mas Hast­ings (1784–1872) (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tune:

portrait
Thomas Hastings
(1784–1872)

Lyrics

Jesus, wondrous Savior! Christ, of kings the king!
Angels fall before Thee, prostrate worshipping;
Fairest they confess Thee in the Heav’n above.
We would sing Thee fairest here in hymns of love.

Fairer far than sunlight unto eyes that wait
Amid fear and darkness, ’til the morning break;
Fairer than the day-dawn, hills and dales among,
When its tide of glory wakes the tide of song.

Sweeter far than music quivering from keys
That unbind all feeling with strange harmonies.
Thou art more and dearer than all minstrelsy;
Only in Thy presence can joy’s fullness be.

All earth’s flowing pleasures were a wintry sea,
Heav’n itself without Thee dark as night would be.
Lamb of God! Thy glory is the light above.
Lamb of God! Thy glory is the life of love.

Life is death if severed from Thy throbbing heart.
Death with life abundant at Thy touch would start.
Worlds and men and angels all consist in Thee:
Yet Thou camest to us in humility.

Jesus! All perfections rise and end in Thee;
Brightness of God’s glory Thou, eternally,
Favored beyond measure they Thy face who see;
May we gracious Savior, share this ecstasy.