The people that walked in darkness…they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death.@Isaiah 9:2

Tho­mas Cot­ter­ill, Selection of Psalms and Hymns, 8th ed­i­tion, 1819. John Ju­li­an stated that this hymn seems to be based on O’er Those Gloomy Hills of Darkness, by Will­iam Will­iams.

Putney Lo­well Ma­son, Car­mi­na Sac­ra (Bos­ton, Mas­sa­chu­setts: John H. Wil­kins & Ri­chard B. Car­ter, 1844) (🔊 pdf nwc).

portrait
Lowell Mason (1792–1872)

O’er the realms of pagan darkness,
Let the eye of pity gaze;
See the kindreds of the people
Lost in sin’s bewildering maze;
Darkness brooding
On the face of all the earth.

Thou to whom all power is given,
Speak the word; at Thy command
Let the company of preachers
Spread Thy name from land to land!
Lord, be with them
Alway to the end of time.