Not many birthdays or other events to mark this week, but another Advent hymn is certainly appropriate. We move from the prophecies regarding the reign of God to the promised coming of Christ as Savior and Healer.
Hark, the glad sound! the Savior comes,
The Savior promised long;
Let every heart prepare a home,
And every voice, a song.
On you, the Spirit, largely poured,
Exerts her sacred fire;
And wisdom and might, and zeal and love,
Your holy words inspire.
You come, the prisoners to release,
In sorrow's bondage held;
The gates of brass before you burst,
The iron fetters yield.
You come, the broken heart to bind,
The bleeding soul to cure;
And with the treasures of your grace
Life's vict'ry to ensure.
Heavn's silver trumpets publish loud
The jubilee of God!
Our debts are all remitted now,
Our heritage restored.
Our glad hosannas, Prince of Peace,
Your welcome shall proclaim;
And heav’n’s eternal arches ring
With your belovèd Name.
Philip Doddridge, 1735; alt.
Tune: RICHMOND (C.M.)
Thomas Haweis, 1792; adapt. Samuel Webbe, 1808
Philip Doddridge we have met before. I have reinstated the fifth verse of his hymn, which is frequently left out of modern hymnals. One more verse that is rarely seen:
You come, from thickest films of vice
To clear the mental ray,
And on the eyes oppressed with night
To pour celestial day.
Thomas Haweis, expelled from Oxford University for proclaiming himself a Calvinist, is somewhat more remembered as a writer of hymn texts rather than tunes, though he wrote both. He compiled a hymnal titled Carmina Christo; or, Hymns to the Savior (1792), "designed for the use and comfort of those who worship the Lamb that was slain" and containing 256 of his own hymns.