Amazing Grace: 366 Hymn Stories

December 31

Freely adapted from Josiah Condor, 1789–1855
For the Lord is the great God, the great King above all gods. (Psalm 95:3)
As we reflect on the joys, failures, and blessings of the past year, we can rejoice in the truth that we are personally related to the Lord Jehovah, who is king of heaven and earth and will reign forever. Some day we shall see Him and begin to enjoy His eternal presence.
This vibrant hymn stirs us to praise and gratefulness for all of God’s leading in the past year. We will never “murmur at His wise decrees” if we remember His promises and reflect on how good and great He is. We are also reminded by this triumphant text that we must submit ourselves in humility to God’s will in our lives, trusting “His tender care” for us. Then we are to sing and shout His praise throughout each day! What a victorious life this suggests for us as believers as we approach another new year.
The text of this fine hymn is an adaptation of one written earlier by Josiah Condor, a respected non-conformist lay preacher in the Congregational church of England. The music for this text was arranged from a tune found in The Sacred Harp, a collection of early American sacred music.
The Lord is King! Lift up, lift up thy voice—sing His praise, sing His praise! All heav’n and earth before Him now rejoice—sing His praise, sing His praise! From world to world the joy shall ring, for He alone is God and King; from sky to sky His banner fling—sing His praise, sing His praise!
The Lord is King! Let all His worth declare—great is He, great is He! Bow to His will and trust His tender care—great is He, great is He! Nor murmur at His wise decrees, nor doubt His steadfast promises; in humble faith fall on thy knees—great is He!
The Lord is King! And bow to Him ye must—God is great, God is good! The judge of all to all is ever just—God is great, God is good! Holy and true are all His ways: Let ev’ry creature shout His praise; the Lord of Hosts, Ancient of Days—God is great, God is good!
The Lord is King! Throughout His vast domain He is all, all in all! The Lord Jehovah evermore shall reign—He is all, all in all! Through earth and heav’n one song shall ring, from grateful hearts this anthem spring: Arise, ye saints, salute thy King—all thy days, sing His praise!

    For Today: Psalm 10:16; 145:11–13; Luke 1:33; 1 Timothy 6:15; Revelation 11:15

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