I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord.@John 1:23
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James L. Milligan (1876-1961)

James L. Milligan, 1925.

I wrote the hymn at the time of the consummation of the union of the Presbyterian, Methodist and Congregational churches [in 1925], which now form the United Church of Canada. I was Director of Publicity during the three years’ campaign prior to the Union.

Hereford (Heins) Francis D. Heins (1878-1949) (🔊 pdf nwc).

There’s a voice in the wilderness crying,
A call from the ways untrod:
Prepare in the desert a highway,
A highway for our God!
The valleys shall be exalted,
The lofty hills brought low;
Make straight all the crooked places,
Where the Lord our God may go!

O Zion, that bringest good tidings,
Get thee up to the heights and sing!
Proclaim to a desolate people
The coming of their king.
Like the flowers of the field they perish,
The works of men decay,
The power and pomp of nations
Shall pass like a dream away.

But the word of our God endureth,
The arm of the Lord is strong;
He stands in the midst of nations,
And He will right the wrong.
He shall feed His flock like a shepherd,
And fold the lambs to His breast;
In pastures of peace He’ll lead them,
And give to the weary rest.

There’s a voice in the wilderness crying,
A call from the ways untrod:
Prepare in the desert a highway,
A highway for our God!
The valleys shall be exalted,
The lofty hills brought low;
Make straight all the crooked places,
Where the Lord our God may go!