Thy Hand, O God, Has Guided

Representative Text

1 Your hand, O God, has guided
your flock from age to age;
your faithfulness is written
on history's open page.
Our fathers owned your goodness,
and we their deeds record;
and both to this bear witness:
one church, one faith, one Lord!

2 Your heralds brought the gospel
to greatest and the least;
they summoned men and women
to share the great King's feast.
And this was all their teaching
in ev'ry deed and word,
to all alike proclaiming:
one church, one faith, one Lord!

3 Your mercy will not fail us
nor leave your work undone;
with your right hand to help us
the vict'ry shall be won.
And then by earth and heaven
your name shall be adored;
and this shall be our anthem:
one church, one faith, one Lord!

Source: Trinity Psalter Hymnal #416

Author: E. H. Plumptre

Edward H. Plumptre (b. London, England, August 6, 1821; d. Wells, England, February 1, 1891) was an eminent classical and biblical scholar who gained prominence in both church and university. Educated at King's College, London, and University College, Oxford, he was ordained in the Church of England in 1846. Plumptre served as a preacher at Oxford and a professor of pastoral theology at King's College, and held a number of other prestigious positions. His writings include A Life of Bishop Ken (1888), translations from Greek and Latin classics, and poetry and hymns. Plumptre was also a member of the committee that produced the Revised Version of the Bible. Bert Polman… Go to person page >


Scripture References:
ref. = Eph. 4:4-6

Edward H. Plumptre (PHH 363) wrote this text entitled "Church Defence" and published it in Plumptre's Lazarus and Other Poems (1865). Republished in the 1889 Supplement to Hymns Ancient and Modern, the text has gained much popularity in England. Of the original six stanzas, the Psalter Hymnal provides stanzas 1, 2, and 6 in modern language.

The text affirms God's faithful hand of guidance and blessing on the church (st. 1), a church that has continually proclaimed the gospel of the kingdom (st. 2), and that, by God's power, will ultimately be victorious in its mission (st. 3). Each stanza leads directly into the powerful refrain line taken from Ephesians 4:4-5: “There is one body [the church of Christ] . . . one Lord, one faith. . . .”

Liturgical Use:
Festivals of the church; church anniversaries; mission services; Reformation celebrations; ordination/ commissioning services.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook, 1988



The Cyber Hymnal #6660
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Instances (1 - 28 of 28)

Ancient and Modern #814

Anglican Hymns Old and New (Rev. and Enl.) #772

Church Family Worship #130

Church Hymnal, Fifth Edition #529


Church Hymnary (4th ed.) #511

Common Praise (1998) #444


Common Praise #606


Complete Anglican Hymns Old and New #689

Complete Mission Praise #705

TextPage Scan

CPWI Hymnal #351


Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary #196

Hymns Ancient and Modern, New Standard Edition #171

Hymns and Psalms #784


Hymns for Today's Church (2nd ed.) #536


Hymns of Glory, Songs of Praise #511

Hymns Old and New #518

Text InfoTune InfoTextAudio

Psalter Hymnal (Gray) #509

Text InfoText

Seventh-day Adventist Hymnal #351

Sing Glory #649

Singing the Faith #692


The Book of Praise #477


The Cyber Hymnal #6660


The Irish Presbyterian Hymbook #155

The Irish Presbyterian Hymbook #156


The New English Hymnal #485


Together in Song #456

TextPage Scan

Trinity Psalter Hymnal #416


Voices United #274

Include 26 pre-1979 instances
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