Built on the Rock

Representative Text

1 Built on the Rock the Church shall stand
even when steeples are falling.
Crumbled have spires in ev'ry land;
bells still are chiming and calling,
calling the young and old to rest,
but above all the soul distressed,
longing for rest everlasting.

2 Surely in temples made with hands
God, the Most High, is not dwelling;
high above earth his temple stands,
all earthly temples excelling.
Yet he who dwells in heav'n above
chooses to live with us in love,
making our bodies his temple.

3 We are God's house of living stones,
built for his own habitation.
He through baptismal grace us owns
heirs of his wondrous salvation.
Were we but two his name to tell,
yet he would deign with us to dwell
with all his grace and his favor.

4 Here stands the font before our eyes,
telling how God has received us.
Th'altar recalls Christ's sacrifice
and what the sacrament gives us.
Here sound the Scriptures that proclaim
Christ yesterday, today, the same,
And evermore, our Redeemer.

5 Grant, then, O God, your will be done,
that, when the church bells are ringing,
many in saving faith may come
where Christ his message is bringing:
"I know my own; my own know me.
You, not the world, my face shall see.
My peace I leave with you. Amen."

Source: Christian Worship: Hymnal #856

Author: N. F. S. Grundtvig

Nicolai Frederik Severin Grundtvig was the son of a pastor, and was born at Udby, in Seeland, in 1783. He studied in the University of Copenhagen from 1800-1805; and, like some other eminent men, did not greatly distinguish himself; his mind was too active and his imagination too versatile to bear the restraint of the academic course. After leaving the university he took to teaching; first in Langeland, then (1808) in Copenhagen. Here he devoted his attention to poetry, literature, and Northern antiquities. In 1810 he became assistant to his father in a parish in Jutland. The sermon he preached at his ordination, on the subject "Why has the Lord's word disappeared from His house," attracted much attention, which is rarely the case with "pro… Go to person page >

Translator: Carl Døving

Born: March 21, 1867, Nord­dal­en, Nor­way. Died: Oc­to­ber 2, 1937, Chi­ca­go, Il­li­nois. Buried: De­cor­ah, Io­wa.  Go to person page >



Composed for this text by Ludwig M. Lindeman (b. Trondheim, Norway, 1812; d. Oslo, Norway, 1887), KIRKEN was published in Wilhelm A. Wexel's Christelige Psalmer (1840). A bar form (AAB) tune in the Dorian mode, it is a suitably rugged, folk-like tune for this text, with a satisfying climax in line 6…

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The Cyber Hymnal #689
  • Adobe Acrobat image (PDF)
  • Noteworthy Composer score (NWC)
  • XML score (XML)
Psalter Hymnal (Gray) #503
  • Bulletin Score (PDF)
  • Bulletin Score (melody only) (PDF)
  • Full Score (PDF, XML)
With Heart and Voice: songs for all God's children #133
  • Full Score (PDF, XML)
  • Bulletin Score (PDF)
  • Bulletin Score (melody only) (PDF)


Instances (1 - 24 of 24)

Ambassador Hymnal #294


Baptist Hymnal 1991 #351

Celebrating Grace Hymnal #247

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Chalice Hymnal #273

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Christian Worship (1993) #529

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Christian Worship #856

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Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary #211

Evangelical Lutheran Worship #652

Hymnal #309

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Hymns for a Pilgrim People #487

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Hymns to the Living God #292

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Lutheran Service Book #645

Lutheran Worship #291

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Moravian Book of Worship #512

Text InfoTune InfoTextScoreAudioPage Scan

Psalter Hymnal (Gray) #503

Seventh-day Adventist Hymnal #347

Sing Joyfully #114

The Covenant Hymnal #595


The Cyber Hymnal #689

The Worshiping Church #705

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Trinity Hymnal (Rev. ed.) #351

TextScoreAudioPage Scan

With Heart and Voice #133

Worship and Rejoice #546

Worship and Song #3147

Include 46 pre-1979 instances
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