Scripture Verse

Joseph is a fruitful bough, even a fruitful bough by a well; whose branches run over the wall. Genesis 49:22

Introduction

portrait
Edward Denny
1796–1889

Words: Ed­ward Den­ny, Hymns and Po­ems (Lon­don: James Nis­bet, 1849), pag­es 67–69, alt.

Music: Be­a­ti­tu­do John B. Dykes, in Hymns An­cient and Mo­dern, 1875 (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tunes:

A well of wa­ter in Scrip­ture is the sym­bol of grace; and our bless­ed Lord, by the very same well which was giv­en by Ja­cob of old to Jo­seph his son, may be viewed as the true Jo­seph, with His branch­es in­deed run­ning ov­er the wall, name­ly, His love go­ing forth, be­yond the bounds of that peo­ple to whom alone he was sent…to bless, not only this poor Sa­ma­ri­tan wo­man, but all in like man­ner, whose souls are, like hers, athirst for the wa­ter of life.

Edward Denny

illustration
Woman at the Well
Carl H. Bloch
1834–1890

Lyrics

Sweet was the hour, O Lord, to Thee,
At Sychar’s lonely well,
When that poor outcast heard Thee there
Thy great salvation tell.

Thither she came; but O, her heart
All filled with earthly care,
Dreamed not of Thee, nor thought to find
The Hope of Israel there.

Lord! ’twas Thy power unseen that drew
The stray one to that place,
In solitude to learn from Thee
The secrets of Thy grace.

There Jacob’s erring daughter found
Those streams unknown before,
The water brooks of life that make
The weary thirst no more.

And Lord, to us, as vile as she,
Thy gracious lips have told
That mystery of love revealed
At Jacob’s well of old.

In spirit, Lord, we’ve sat with Thee
Beside the springing well
Of life and peace—and heard Thee there
Its healing virtues tell.

Dead to the world, we dream no more
Of earthly pleasures now;
Our deep, divine unfailing spring
Of grace and glory Thou!

No hope of rest in aught beside,
No beauty, Lord, we see;
And, like Samaria’s daughter, seek,
And find our all in Thee.