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70. Come Quickly, LORD, to Rescue Me

Text Information
First Line: Come quickly, LORD, to rescue me
Title: Come Quickly, LORD, to Rescue Me
Versifier: Bert Polman (1983)
Publication Date: 1987
Meter: LM
Scripture: Psalm 70
Topic: Suffering of Christ; Alternative Harmonizations
Language: English
Copyright: Text © 1987, CRC Publications
Tune Information
Harmonizer: Erik R. Routley (1982)
Meter: LM
Key: F Major
Copyright: Harmonization © 1985, Hope Publishing Co. All rights reserved. Used by permission

Text Information:

A prayer asking God to deliver from mortal enemies and thus move all the saints to joyful praise.

Scripture References:
st. 1 = vv. 1-3
st. 2 = v. 4
st. 3 = v. 5

This short prayer for God's help from enemies who threaten the psalmist's life is a revision of Psalm 40:13-17. The prayer is framed by pleas to God to "come quickly" (w. 1, 5; st. 1, 3). Between these urgent calls are prayers asking God to bring disgrace upon the psalmist's enemies (st. 1) and to bring joy to "all who seek" the LORD (st. 2). Bert Polman (PHH 37) versified this psalm in 1983 for the Psalter Hymnal.

Liturgical Use:
Before or after the congregational prayer, especially in time of threat to God's people; the more elaborate concertato version suggested is useful during Advent.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

Tune Information:

DISTRESS was published in William Walker's (PHH 44) Southern Harmony (1835), set in shape notes to Anne Steele's "So Fades the Lovely Blooming Flow'r." The plaintive pentatonic (five-pitch) tune has a simple but effective design: the first phrase has an ascending melody that climaxes in phrases 2 and 3 and returns to the opening melody again in phrase 4. Sustain a leisurely tempo. Like many pentatonic folk tunes, DISTRESS may be sung in canon after two or three beats. Two harmonizations are given–one by Erik Routley (PHH 31) for Rejoice in the Lord (1985) , and the original from Southern Harmony (opposite 69 in the hymnal). A concertato performance of this psalm could be planned as follows:

Choir: 639, singing "Maranatha" instead of "Alleluia"
Congregation: 70, stanza 1
Choir: 639, singing "Maranatha"
Choir: 70, stanza 2, in alternate choral harmonization
Choir: 639, singing "Alleluia"
Congregation: 70, stanza 3
Choir: 639, singing "Maranatha"

"Maranatha" was an Aramaic expression used in the early Christian church meaning "Lord, come!" (1 Cor. 16:22).

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

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