430. We Sing the Mighty Power of God

1 We sing the mighty power of God
that made the mountains rise,
that spread the flowing seas abroad
and built the lofty skies.
We sing the wisdom that ordained
the sun to rule the day;
the moon shines full at his command,
and all the stars obey.

2 We sing the goodness of the Lord
that filled the earth with food;
he formed the creatures with his word
and then pronounced them good.
Lord, how your wonders are displayed,
where'er we turn our eyes,
if we survey the ground we tread
or gaze upon the skies.

3 There's not a plant or flower below
but makes your glories known,
and clouds arise and tempests blow
by order from your throne;
while all that borrows life from you
is ever in your care,
and everywhere that we can be,
you, God, are present there.

Text Information
First Line: We sing the mighty power of God
Title: We Sing the Mighty Power of God
Author: Isaac Watts (1715, alt.)
Meter: CMD
Language: English
Publication Date: 1987
Scripture: ; ; ; ;
Topic: Praise & Adoration; Creation and Providence; Creation (1 more...)
Tune Information
Adapter and Harmonizer: Ralph Vaughan Williams (1906)
Meter: CMD
Key: G Major
Source: English
Copyright: By permission of Oxford University Press

Text Information:

Scripture References:
all st. = Gen. 1, Job 26, Ps. 104

Written by Isaac Watts (PHH 155), this eight-stanza text originally began "I sing the almighty power of God." The text was published in Divine and Moral Songs far the Use of Children (1715; the first hymnal intended primarily for children) with the heading "Praise for Creation and Providence." The Psalter Hymnal omits the original stanzas 7 and 8 and combines the other six original stanzas into three long ones.

Although it was written for children, this is also a great hymn for adults. The text presents a wonderful view of God's creation sketched in vivid pictorial language. The creation around us is a beautiful panorama that testifies to its Creator, whose power and wisdom (st. 1), goodness and wonders (st. 2), and providence and omnipresence (st. 3) we confess with awe and praise.

Liturgical Use:
On many occasions at the beginning of worship; services that focus on creation and providence (including harvest thanksgiving).

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

Tune Information:

Thought by some scholars to date back to the Middle Ages, KINGSFOLD is a folk tune set to a variety of texts in England and Ireland. The tune was published in English Country Songs (1893), an anthology compiled by Lucy E. Broadwood and J. A. Fuller Maitland. After having heard the tune in Kingsfold, Sussex, England (thus its name), Ralph Vaughan Williams (PHH 316) introduced it as a hymn tune in The English Hymnal (1906) as a setting for Horatius Bonar's "I Heard the Voice of Jesus Say" (488).

Shaped in classic rounded bar form (AABA), KINGSFOLD has modal character and is both dignified and strong. It is well suited to either unison or harmony singing. Use bright organ tone. Try playing on two manuals and pedal on the middle stanzas.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

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