1 God of the ages, whose almighty hand
leads forth in beauty all the starry band
of shining worlds in splendor through the skies:
our grateful songs before thy throne arise.
2 Thy love divine hath led us in the past;
in this free land by thee our lot is cast;
be thou our ruler, guardian, guide, and stay;
thy Word our law, thy paths our chosen way.
3 From war's alarms, from deadly pestilence,
be thy strong arm our ever sure defense;
may true religion in our hearts increase,
thy bounteous goodness nourish us in peace.
4 Refresh thy people on their toilsome way;
lead us from night to never ending day;
fill all our lives with love and grace divine;
all glory, laud, and praise be ever thine.
Unlike many other nationalist hymns, this text keeps our focus on God. This is a Go who created the universe, who leads and governs his people, who serves as our protector, and who refreshes his people with divine love. Presumably the text referred originally to white Anglo-Saxons, but in its present form it is fitting for all citizens and residents of any country. Christians too may sing this anthem, using it to recognize the national association we have on earth but remembering that the practice of "true religion" (st. 3) transcends earthly loyalties and promotes citizenship in the kingdom of heaven.
Psalter Hymnal Handbook