Scripture Verse

Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts. Psalm 139:23


Words: J. Ed­win Orr, 1936. Orr wrote these words at a re­vi­val meet­ing in Nga­ru­awa­hia, New Zea­land, tak­ing less than five min­utes to put them down on pa­per.

Music: Ma­ori, at­trib­ut­ed to Cle­ment Scott, a mis­sion­ary in Chi Ny­an­ja, Af­ri­ca (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tunes:

J. Edwin Orr (1912–1987)

Origin of the Song

The tune [Maori] was adapt­ed from Swiss Cra­dle Song by Cle­ment Scott. It was re­leased by the Aus­tral­ian mu­sic com­pa­ny W. H. Pal­ing and Co. in 1913.

It was then adapt­ed in New Zea­land for a fare­well song for Ma­ori sol­diers be­gin­ning in World War I, mo­di­fied with the words This is the hour, used as a waltz tune, and then picked up in 1945 by sing­er Gra­cie Fields with the words Now is the hour.

It was al­so re­cord­ed by Bing Cros­by, Kate Smith and Ed­dy How­ard.

Dianne Shapiro
The Hymnary
Accessed 19 Sep 2019


Search me, O God,
And know my heart to­day;
Try me, O Sav­ior,
Know my thoughts, I pray.
See if there be
Some wick­ed way in me;
Cleanse me from ev­ery sin
And set me free.

I praise Thee, Lord,
For cleans­ing me from sin;
Fulfill Thy Word,
And make me pure with­in.
Fill me with fire
Where once I burned with shame;
Grant my de­sire
To mag­ni­fy Thy name.

Lord, take my life,
And make it whol­ly Thine;
Fill my poor heart
With Thy great love di­vine.
Take all my will,
My pas­sion, self and pride;
I now sur­ren­der, Lord
In me abide.

O Ho­ly Ghost,
Revival comes from Thee;
Send a re­viv­al,
Start the work in me.
Thy Word de­clares
Thou wilt sup­ply our need;
For bless­ings now,
O Lord, I humb­ly plead.