187. O Praise the LORD, for It Is Good

1 O praise the LORD, for it is good
to sing unto our God;
'tis right and pleasant for his saints
to tell his praise abroad.
The LORD our God builds up his church,
finds those who draw apart;
he binds their wounds and gently leads,
he heals the broken heart.

2 Our Lord is great: he calls by name
and counts the stars of night;
his wisdom is unsearchable,
and wondrous is his might.
The LORD upholds the poor and meek
but brings the wicked low;
sing praise to him who sends the rain,
whose care the cattle know.

3 No human might, no earthly pride
delights the LORD above;
in those who fear him he delights,
in those who trust his love.
O Zion, praise the LORD your God,
his wondrous love confess;
he is your glory and your strength,
he will your children bless.

Text Information
First Line: O praise the LORD, for it is good to sing unto our God
Title: O Praise the LORD, for It Is Good
Publication Date: 1987
Meter: CMD
Scripture: Psalm 147:1-13
Topic: Love: God's Love to Us; Sickness & Health; Alleluias (2 more...)
Source: Psalter, 1912, alt.
Language: English
Tune Information
Composer (desc.): Dale Grotenhuis (1976)
Composer: John H. Stockton (1874)
Meter: CMD
Key: G Major
Copyright: Descant © 1976, Dale Grotenhuis

Text Information:

Scripture References:
st. 1 = Ps. 147:1-3
st. 2 = Ps. 147:4-9
st. 3 = Ps. 147: 10-13

The people of Jerusalem (v. 2) become the "church" (st. 1) in this hymn-like versification of Psalm 147. With minor alterations in each stanza, the versification comes from the 1912 Psalter. See PHH 147 for further commentary on Psalm 147.

Liturgical Use:
See PHH 147.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

Tune Information:

John H. Stockton (b. New Hope, PA, 1813; d. Philadelphia, PA, 1877) composed MINERVA for one of his own gospel-hymn texts, "Come, Every Soul by Sin Oppressed." The tune was published in his Salvation Melodies No.1 (1874); however, it had also been published earlier in Joyful Songs Nos. 1-3 Combined (1869) with the note "arr. by W. G. Fischer, by permission."

The significance of the tune title MINERVA is unknown, unless for some reason it refers to the mythical Roman goddess of wisdom. It is also sometimes known as STOCKTON, after its composer.

Although born into a Presbyterian home, Stockton was converted at the age of twenty-one in a Methodist revival meeting. He became a lay preacher in the Methodist Church in 1844 and was ordained in 1857. After serving several pastorates in New Jersey, he retired in 1874 due to ill health. Throughout his ministry he was strongly interested in evangelism and music. When Dwight 1. Moody and Ira D. Sankey held their revival meetings in Philadelphia, Stockton assisted them and wrote several gospel songs and tunes for their use. He published two collections of hymns: Salvation Melodies (1874) and Precious Songs (1875).

MINERVA is a simple tune in ABB'B form with one consistent rhythmic pattern and the simple harmonization common to many gospel hymns–and thus is easy for guitar. Sing this tune in harmony at a lively tempo using crisp rhythms over a legato organ pedal. The descant was composed by Dale Grotenhuis (PHH 4) in 1976 as part of a collection of descants for the 1959 edition of the Psalter Hymnal.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

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