O Spirit of the Living God

Representative Text

1 O SPIRIT of the living God,
In all Thy plenitude of grace,
Where’er the foot of man hath trod,
Descend on our apostate race.

2 Give tongues of fire and hearts of love,
To preach the reconciling word;
Give power and unction from above
Whene’er the joyful sound is heard.

3 Be darkness, at Thy coming, light;
Confusion order in Thy path:
Souls without strength inspire with might;
Bid mercy triumph over wrath.

4 O Spirit of the Lord, prepare
All the round earth her God to meet;
Breathe Thou abroad, like morning air,
Till hearts of stone begin to beat.

5 Baptize the nations; far and nigh
The triumphs of the cross record;
The name of Jesus glorify,
Till every kindred call Him Lord.

6 God, from eternity, hath willed
All flesh shall His salvation see:
So be the Father’s love fulfilled,
The Saviour’s sufferings crowned through Thee.

Source: Redemption Hymnal #236

Author: James Montgomery

James Montgomery (b. Irvine, Ayrshire, Scotland, 1771; d. Sheffield, Yorkshire, England, 1854), the son of Moravian parents who died on a West Indies mission field while he was in boarding school, Montgomery inherited a strong religious bent, a passion for missions, and an independent mind. He was editor of the Sheffield Iris (1796-1827), a newspaper that sometimes espoused radical causes. Montgomery was imprisoned briefly when he printed a song that celebrated the fall of the Bastille and again when he described a riot in Sheffield that reflected unfavorably on a military commander. He also protested against slavery, the lot of boy chimney sweeps, and lotteries. Associated with Christians of various persuasions, Montgomery supported missio… Go to person page >


O Spirit of the living God. J. Montgomery. [For Missions.] Written in 1823 "to be sung at the Public Meeting of the Auxiliary Missionary Society for the West Biding of Yorkshire, to be sung in Salem Chapel, Leeds, June 4, 1823." It was first printed on a fly-sheet for that meeting, and again in the Evangelical Magazine in the following August. After a careful and most successful revision it was published by Montgomery in his Christian Psalmist, 1825, No. 552, in 6 stanzas of 4 lines, and headed "The Spirit accompanying the Word of God; " and again in his Original Hymns, 1853, No. 257. It is usually given in an abridged form; but the text is seldom altered. As a hymn on behalf of Missions it has great merit, and is in extensive use in all English-speaking countries. The original text is given in the Churchman's Shilling Magazine, 1877.

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)



Also known as: ST. PHILIPS BENEDICTION GRANTON NAZARETH MELCOMBE was first used as an anonymous chant tune (with figured bass) in the Roman Catholic Mass and was published in 1782 in An Essay on the Church Plain Chant. It was first ascribed to Samuel Webbe (the elder; b. London, England, 1740; d.…

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The original version of WINCHESTER NEW appeared in Musikalisches Handbuch der geistlichen Melodien, published in Hamburg, Germany, in 1690 by Georg Wittwe. It was set to the text “Wer nur den lieben Gott” (see 446). An expanded version of the tune was a setting for "Dir, dir Jehova" (see 203) in…

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The Cyber Hymnal #5338
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Instances (1 - 17 of 17)

Ancient and Modern #257

Church Hymnal, Fifth Edition #306

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Common Praise (1998) #40

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Common Praise #190

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CPWI Hymnal #286

Hymns and Psalms #322a

Hymns and Psalms #322b


Hymns for Today's Church (2nd ed.) #513

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Redemption Hymnal #236

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Rejoice in the Lord #378


Small Church Music #1108

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The Book of Praise #401


The Cyber Hymnal #5338


The Hymnal 1982 #531

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The Irish Presbyterian Hymbook #639


Together in Song #405

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Trinity Hymnal (Rev. ed.) #337

Include 352 pre-1979 instances
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