The Excellency of Scripture

Representative Text

1 Father of mercies, in Thy word,
What endless glory shines!
Forever be Thy name adored
For these celestial lines.

2 Here may the wretched sons of want
Exhaustless riches find:
Riches above what earth can grant
And lasting as the mind.

3 Here the fair tree of knowledge grows,
And yields a free repast;
Sublimer sweets than nature knows
Invites the longing taste.

4 Here the Redeemer's welcome voice
Spreads heavenly peace around;
And life and everlasting joys
Attend the blissful sound.

5 O may these heavenly pages be
My ever dear delight.
And still new beauties may I see,
And still increasing light.

6 Divine Instructor, gracious Lord,
Be Thou forever near:
Teach me to love Thy sacred word
And view my Savior there.

Amen.

Source: African Methodist Episcopal Church Hymnal #202

Author: Anne Steele

Anne Steele was the daughter of Particular Baptist preacher and timber merchant William Steele. She spent her entire life in Broughton, Hampshire, near the southern coast of England, and devoted much of her time to writing. Some accounts of her life portray her as a lonely, melancholy invalid, but a revival of research in the last decade indicates that she had been more active and social than what was previously thought. She was theologically conversant with Dissenting ministers and "found herself at the centre of a literary circle that included family members from various generations, as well as local literati." She chose a life of singleness to focus on her craft. Before Christmas in 1742, she declined a marriage proposal from contemporar… Go to person page >

Notes

Father of mercies, in Thy word. Anne Steele. [Holy Scripture.] First published in her Poems on Subjects chiefly Devotional, 1760, vol. i. p. 58, in 12 stanzas of 4 lines, repeated in the enlarged edition, 1780, and in Sedgwick's reprint of her Hymns, 1863, p. 36. In 1769, Ash & Evans gave a selection of 6 stanzas in their Bristol Baptist Collection, No. 79, and from this arrangement mainly the well-known hymn is taken. It is in extensive use in Great Britain and America, and is one of the most popular of Miss Steele's hymns.

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)

Tune

BEATITUDO

Composed by John B. Dykes (PHH 147), BEATITUDO was published in the revised edition of Hymns Ancient and Modern (1875), where it was set to Isaac Watts' "How Bright Those Glorious Spirits Shine." Originally a word coined by Cicero, BEATITUDO means "the condition of blessedness." Like many of Dykes's…

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RICHMOND (Haweis)

RICHMOND (also known as CHESTERFIELD) is a florid tune originally written by Thomas Haweis (PHH 270) and published in his collection Carmina Christo (1792). Samuel Webbe, Jr., adapted and shortened the tune and published it in his Collection of Psalm Tunes (1808). It was reprinted in 1853 in Webbe's…

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ST. AGNES (Dykes)

John B. Dykes (PHH 147) composed ST. AGNES for [Jesus the Very Thought of Thee]. Dykes named the tune after a young Roman Christian woman who was martyred in A.D. 304 during the reign of Diocletian. St. Agnes was sentenced to death for refusing to marry a nobleman to whom she said, "I am already eng…

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Timeline

Media

The Cyber Hymnal #1485
  • Adobe Acrobat image (PDF)
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  • XML score (XML)

Instances

Instances (1 - 10 of 10)
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African Methodist Episcopal Church Hymnal #202

Ambassador Hymnal #267

Church Family Worship #601

Hymns Ancient and Modern, New Standard Edition #167

Hymns Ancient and Modern, New Standard Edition #357

Text

Hymns for Today's Church (2nd ed.) #247

Sing Glory #224

The Baptist Hymnal #218

TextScoreAudio

The Cyber Hymnal #1485

TextPage Scan

Trinity Hymnal (Rev. ed.) #144

Include 732 pre-1979 instances
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