The Lord Himself will come down from Heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 1 Thessalonians 4:16
Words: John Cennick, 1752. Many centos of this hymn have been published. The first version below is from Songs of Grace and Glory, edited by Charles B. Snepp (London: W. Hunt, 1872), number 314. For another version, see Lo, He Comes with Clouds Descending.
Lo! He cometh! countless trumpets
Blow to raise the sleeping dead!
’Mid ten thousand saints and angels,
See the great exalted Head!
Welcome, welcome, Son of God!
Full of joyful expectation,
Saints behold their Lord appear;
Truth and justice go before Him;
Now the joyful sentence hear!
Welcome sounds throughout the air!
Come, ye blessèd of My Father,
Enter into life and joy!
Banish all your fears and sorrows,
Endless praise be your employ!
Welcome, welcome to the skies.
Now at once they rise to glory,
Jesus brings them to the King;
There with all the hosts of Heaven,
They eternal anthems sing:
Boundless glory to the Lamb!
This is the earliest known printed version of the text, from Cennick’s Collection of Sacred Hymns, fifth edition (Dublin: Samuel Powell, 1752):
Lo! He cometh, countless trumpets
Blow before His bloody sign!
’Midst ten thousand saints and angels,
See the Crucified shine.
Welcome, welcome, bleeding Lamb!
Now His merits by the harpers,
Thro’ the eternal deep resounds!
Now resplendent shine His nail-prints,
Every eye shall see His wounds;
They who pierced Him,
Shall at His appearing wail.
Every island, sea, and mountain,
Heaven and earth shall flee away!
All who hate Him must, ashamed,
Hear the trump proclaim His day:
Come to judgment!
Stand before the Son of Man!
All who love Him view His glory,
Shining in His bruised face:
His dear person on the rainbow,
Now His people’s heads shall raise:
Now on clouds He comes! He comes!
Now redemption, long expected,
See, in solemn pomp appear:
All His people, once despised,
Now shall meet Him in the air:
Now the promised kingdom’s come!
View Him smiling, now determined
Every evil to destroy!
All the nations now shall sing Him
Songs of everlasting joy!
O come quickly!
Allelujah! come Lord, come!