Scripture Verse

Let us lift up our hearts and hands to God in Heaven. Lamentations 3:41

Introduction

portrait
Garret C. Wellesley
(1735–1781)
Earl of Mornington

Words: John Wes­ley, Col­lect­ion of Psalms and Hymns 1741.

Music: Morn­ing­ton ar­ranged from Gar­ret C. Well­es­ley, cir­ca 1760, in Da­vid’s Harp, by Ed­ward Mill­er, 1805 (🔊 pdf nwc).

portrait
John Wesley
(1703–1791)

This is one of the few orig­in­al hymns as­cribed to John Wes­ley. One rea­son why it is thought to be his ra­ther than Charles Wes­ley’s is that it is on­ly half-rhymed. Not a si­ngle known stan­za of Charles Wes­ley’s has that pe­cul­i­ar­i­ty.

The sub­lime thought ex­pressed in the third line of the first stan­za is bor­rowed from Pla­to: Lu­men est um­bra Dei.

Nutter, p. 29

Lyrics

We lift our hearts to Thee,
O Day Star from on high!
The sun itself is but Thy shade,
Yet cheers both earth and sky.

O let Thine orient beams
The night of sin disperse,
The mists of error and of vice
Which shade the universe.

How beauteous nature now:
How dark and sad before!
With joy we view the pleasing change,
And nature’s God adore.

O may no gloomy crime
Pollute the rising day;
Or Jesus’ blood, like evening dew,
Wash all the stains away.

May we this life improve,
To mourn for errors past;
And live this short, revolving day
As if it were our last.

To God—the Father, Son,
And Spirit—One in Three,
Be glory; as it was, is now,
And shall forever be.