John L. Bell

Short Name: John L. Bell
Full Name: Bell, John L. (John Lamberton), 1949-
Birth Year: 1949

John Bell (b. 1949) was born in the Scottish town of Kilmarnock in Ayrshire, intending to be a music teacher when he felt the call to the ministry. But in frustration with his classes, he did volunteer work in a deprived neighborhood in London for a time and also served for two years as an associate pastor at the English Reformed Church in Amsterdam. After graduating he worked for five years as a youth pastor for the Church of Scotland, serving a large region that included about 500 churches. He then took a similar position with the Iona Community, and with his colleague Graham Maule, began to broaden the youth ministry to focus on renewal of the church’s worship. His approach soon turned to composing songs within the identifiable traditions of hymnody that found began to address concerns missing from the current Scottish hymnal:

"I discovered that seldom did our hymns represent the plight of poor people to God. There was nothing that dealt with unemployment, nothing that dealt with living in a multicultural society and feeling disenfranchised. There was nothing about child abuse…,that reflected concern for the developing world, nothing that helped see ourselves as brothers and sisters to those who are suffering from poverty or persecution." [from an interview in Reformed Worship (March 1993)]

That concern not only led to writing many songs, but increasingly to introducing them internationally in many conferences, while also gathering songs from around the world. He was convener for the fourth edition of the Church of Scotland’s Church Hymnary (2005), a very different collection from the previous 1973 edition. His books, The Singing Thing and The Singing Thing Too, as well as the many collections of songs and worship resources produced by John Bell—some together with other members of the Iona Community’s “Wild Goose Resource Group,” are available in North America from GIA Publications.

Emily Brink

Wikipedia Biography

(For the philosopher, see John Lane Bell.) John Lamberton Bell (born 1949, Kilmarnock, Ayrshire) is a hymn-writer. A Church of Scotland minister, he is a member of the Iona Community, a broadcaster, and former student activist. He works throughout the world, lecturing in theological colleges in the UK, Canada and the United States, but is primarily concerned with the renewal of congregational worship at the grass roots level.

Texts by John L. Bell (189)sort descendingAsInstances
Among us and before us, Lord, you standJohn L. Bell, 1949- (Author)4
And I will not sing aloneJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)2
As if you were not thereJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Be still and know that I am God, Be still and know that I am GodJohn Bell (Author)2
Be still and know that I am GodJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)7
Because the Saviour prayed that we be oneJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Before I take the body of my LordJohn Bell (Author)10
Before the world beganJohn L. Bell (Author)5
Behold, behold, I make all things newJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)4
Behold the Lamb of God, behold the Lamb of GodJohn L. Bell, 1949- (Author)4
[Bless, O my soul, the Lord your God]John Bell (Author)2
[Blessed Are You Poor]John Bell (Author)2
Blest are the poor in spirit, The kingdom of heaven is theirsJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Blest be God, blest be God for everJohn L. Bell (Adapter)4
Bread is blessed and brokenJohn L. Bell, 1949- (Author)6
Brille tu luzJohn L. Bell (escocés, n. 1949) (Author)2
By your saving power deliver meJohn L. Bell, 1949- (Translator)2
Christ has risen while earth slumbersJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)11
Christ's is the world in which we moveJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)9
Clap your hands all you nations; Amen, Hallelujah!John L. Bell (Paraphraser)3
Cloth for the cradleJohn L. Bell (Author)1
Come and let us worship GodJohn Bell, b. 1949 (Translator)2
Singing, we glady worship the Lord togetherJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author (English version))3
Come, Holy Spirit, Come, Holy SpiritJohn Bell, b. 1949 (Author)2
Come, Holy Spirit, Descend on usJohn L. Bell (Author)6
Come, Holy Spirit, Gracious heavenly doveJohn L. Bell (Author)3
Come, Host of Heav'n's high dwelling placeJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)6
Come, Lord, be our guest, Find your way among usJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)3
Come to me, come to me, Weak and heavy ladenJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)6
Come with me, come wander, come welcome the worldJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)4
Comfort, comfort ye my peopleJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Alterer)2
Shooting star and sunset shapeJohn L. Bell (Author)4
Darkness and light and all that's known by sightJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Darkness is gone, daylight has comeJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)3
[Do Not be Vexed]John Bell (Author)2
Don't be afraid. My love is strongerJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)5
[Easter Evening]John Bell (Author)2
First-born of MaryJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Flow gently, sweet Spirit, flow into my soulJohn Bell (Author)2
For all the saints who've shown your loveJohn Bell, b. 1949 (Author)10
For the world and all its peopleJohn L. Bell (Author (English version))5
For you, the pride from my heart is banishedJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)3
From the falter of breath, through the silence of deathJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)6
Funny kind of nightJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Gentler than air, wilder than windJohn L. Bell (Author)2
[Gloria 1, 2]John Bell (Author)2
Glory and gratitude and praiseJohn L. Bell, b. 1959 (Author)3
Glory to God aboveJohn L. Bell (Paraphraser)5
Go, silent friend, your life has found its endingJohn L. Bell (Author)4
God beyond all namesJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)2
God beyond gloryJohn L. Bell, 1949- (Author)4
God bless to us our breadJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (English text)4
God give us life when all aroundJohn L. Bell (Author)4
God, give us peace that lastsJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)2
God, in the planning and purpose of lifeJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)11
God it was who said to AbrahamJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)4
God, let me like a spreading treeJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Adapter)2
God the Creator, You in love made meJohn L. Bell, 1949- (Author)2
God to enfold youJohn L. Bell (Author)4
God unites his scattered peopleJohn Bell (Author)5
God welcomes allJohn L. Bell (Author)2
God, who made the earth, declared it good in the beginningJohn L. Bell (Author (English version))3
Goodness is stronger than evilJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Adapter)5
Great, and high, and holy LordJohn Bell (Author)2
He became poor that we may be richJohn L. Bell, 1949- (Author)3
He came down that we may have loveJohn Bell, b. 1949 (Translator)1
Heaven shall not wait for the poor to lose their patienceJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)8
"Here I stand at the doorJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Holy forever and ever is GodJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)2
How can we live as Christians hereJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)2
I am the vine and you the branchesJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)2
I owe my Lord a morning songJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)3
I shall praise you, O God, from my soulJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)3
I sought him dressed in finest clothesJohn Bell (Author)3
I waited patiently for God, For God to hear my prayerJohn L. Bell (Author)3
[I Was Glad] (Bell)John Bell (Author)2
I will always bless the LordJohn L. Bell (Author)4
[I Will Arise] (Bell)John Bell (Author)2
If you believe and I believe and we together prayJohn Bell (Arranger)1
In a byre near BethlehemJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)3
In complete desperationJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)2
[In deep distress] (Bell)John Bell (Author)2
In love you summon, in love I followJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)2
Infinite God, how great thou artJohn Bell (Author)3
Inspired by love and anger, disturbed by endless painJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)8
It is good to give thanks to you, LordJohn L. Bell (Author)3
James and Andrew, Peter and JohnJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)2
Je louerai l'Éternel de tout mon coeur (I'll praise eternal God with all my heart)John L. Bell (Translator)2
Jesus calls us here to meet himJohn L. Bell (Author)10
Jesus Christ is waitingJohn L. Bell, 1949- (Author)9
Jesus Christ, Jesus Christ, Son of God among usJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Jesus Christ, Lord of allJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Jesus Christ, our living Lord, we believe you keep your word.John L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)4
Jesus is risen, alleluia!John L. Bell (b. 1949) (English version)5
Jesus is risen from the graveJohn L. Bell (1949-) (Author)4
Just as a lost and thirsty deerJohn L. Bell, 1949- (Paraphraser)2
Kindle a flame to lighten the darkJohn L. Bell (Author)4
Lay down your head, Lord Jesus ChristJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)3
Let heaven your wonders proclaimJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)2
Lift up your heads, ye mighty gates, Behold the King of glory waitsJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Adapter)4
Lifting my eyes up to the hillsJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Look and learn from the birds of the airJohn Bell, b. 1949 (Translator)5
Lord and lover of creationJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)1
Lord, draw near. Lord, draw nearJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)2
Lord, hear our cryJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)2
Lord Jesus Christ, lover of allJohn L. Bell, 1949- (Alterer)4
[Love One Another] (Bell and Maule)John Bell (Author)2
May God draw near when the hour of trouble strikesJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)3
Nears the ending of the dayJohn L. Bell (Author)2
No wind at the windowJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)9
Not the powerful, not the privilegedJohn L. Bell, 1949- (Author)2
Nourished by the rainfall, the earth can come aliveJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (English version)3
Now let God's people, let God's IsraelJohn L. Bell (Author)3
Now that evening fallsJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)5
Now the day is doneJohn L. Bell (1949-) (Author)2
[O Bless the Lord] (Bell)John Bell (Author)2
O Christ, you wept when grief was rawJohn L. Bell (Author)4
[O Give Thanks to the Lord] (Bell)John Bell (Author)2
O God, you are my God alone, Whom eagerly I seekJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)4
O great God and Lord of the earthJohn L. Bell (Author)3
O Lamb of God most preciousRev. John Bell (Author)2
O Lord, our Lord, throughout the earthJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)5
On God alone I wait silentlyJohn L. Bell (Author)2
One is the body and one is the HeadJohn L. Bell (Author)8
Poor folk won't always be forgottenJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Praise God for this holy groundJohn L. Bell (Author)4
Praise to the Lord for the joys of the earthJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)5
Praise with joy the world's CreatorJohn L. Bell, 1949- (Author)2
[Prepare the Way of the Lord] (Bell)John Bell (Author)2
Pull back the veil on the dawn of creationJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Ride on, ride on, the time is rightJohn L. Bell (Author)4
[Sanctus and Benedictus (St. Bride Setting)]John Bell (Composer)2
Shake up the morning, let the dawn undressJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)2
She sits like a bird, brooding on the watersJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)9
[Should I Rehearse with Human Voice]John Bell (Author)3
Shout for joy! The Lord has let us feastJohn L. Bell (Author)6
Since the world was youngJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Sing, my soul, when hope is sleepingJohn L. Bell (Author)2
[Sing out, My Soul] (Bell)John Bell (Author)2
Sing praise to God on mountain topsJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Sisters and brothers, with one voiceJohn L. Bell (Author)2
So much wrong and so much injusticeJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author (English version))3
Take, O take me as I amJohn Bell, b. 1949 (Author)22
Take this moment, sign, and spaceJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)11
Te ensalzaré, Señor (I will praise you, O Lord, I will praise you, O Lord)John L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)3
Te ensalzaré, Señor (I will praise you, O Lord, For you came to my rescue)John L. Bell (Author (attributed to))2
Thank you for the nightJohn L. Bell (Author)2
That human life might richer beJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)3
The first is for God's promiseJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)5
The God of all eternityJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)6
The love of God comes closeJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)5
[The Servant] (Bell)John Bell (Author)2
The time was early eveningJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)2
There is a line of womenJohn L. Bell (Author)2
There is a place prepared for little childrenJohn L. Bell (Author)5
This is the body of ChristJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)7
This is the day of rest, To use as God intendedJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)2
Though hope desert my heartJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)5
Through our lives and by our prayersJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)1
To be a soldierJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)3
To the fragile and the fearfulJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author (refrain))2
Today I awake and God is before meJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)9
We cannot care for you the way we wantedJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)5
We cannot measure how you healJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)23
We come, dear Lord, to celebrateJohn L. Bell (Author)3
We rejoice to be God's chosenJohn L. Bell (Author)2
We who live by sound and symbolJohn L. Bell (Author)1
We will lay our burden downJohn Bell, 1949- (Author)5
We will take what you offerJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Sizohamba naye, wo wo wo (We will walk with God, my brothers)John L. Bell, b. 1949 (Translator)9
Were I the perfect child of GodJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)2
What shall we pray for those who diedJohn L. Bell (Author)4
When God Almighty came to earthJohn L. Bell (Author)3
When Jesus longed for us to knowJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (Author)3
When our Lord walked the earthJohn L. Bell (Author)2
When trouble strikes and fear takes rootJohn L. Bell, 1949- (Author)2
When we are living, we are in the LordJohn L. Bell (b. 1949) (English version)4
PrayersJohn Bell (Author)1
[While the earth remains]John Bell (Author)2
Who is the baby an hour or two oldJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)6
Who would ever have believed itJohn L. Bell (Author)3
Who would think that what was neededJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)11
Whoever leads a blameless lifeJohn L. Bell (Author)3
Whoever lives besides the LordJohn L. Bell (Author)2
Will you come and follow meJohn L. Bell, b. 1949 (Author)31
Women and men as God intendedJohn Bell (Author)3
Word of the FatherJohn L. Bell (Author)3
You cunning liar, why publicizeJohn L. Bell (Reviser)2
Your will be done on earth, O Lord (Mayenziwe 'ntando yakho)John L. Bell (Author)1

Data Sources

Suggestions or corrections? Contact us


It looks like you are using an ad-blocker. Ad revenue helps keep us running. Please consider white-listing or subscribing to eliminate ads entirely and help support