1 Father--for Thou my Father art--
Send forth the Spirit of Thy Son;
Breathe Him into my longing heart,
And make me know as I am known:
Make me Thy conscious child, that I
May "Father, Abba Father," cry!
2 O that the Comforter would come!
Nor visit as a transient guest,
But fix in me His constant home,
And keep possession of my breast;
And make my soul His loved abode,
The temple of living God!
Charles Wesley, M.A. was the great hymn-writer of the Wesley family, perhaps, taking quantity and quality into consideration, the great hymn-writer of all ages. Charles Wesley was the youngest son and 18th child of Samuel and Susanna Wesley, and was born at Epworth Rectory, Dec. 18, 1707. In 1716 he went to Westminster School, being provided with a home and board by his elder brother Samuel, then usher at the school, until 1721, when he was elected King's Scholar, and as such received his board and education free. In 1726 Charles Wesley was elected to a Westminster studentship at Christ Church, Oxford, where he took his degree in 1729, and became a college tutor. In the early part of the same year his religious impressions were much deepene… Go to person page >
Father, if Thou my Father art. C. Wesley. [Prayer for the Witness of the Spirit.] Published in Hymns and Sacred Poems, 1740, p. 131, in 6 stanzas of 6 lines,and headed, "Groaning for the Spirit of Adoption" (Poetical Works, 1868-72, vol. i. p. 307). In the Wesleyan Hymn Book, 1780, No. 365, stanzas ii.-vi. were given as "I want the Spirit of power within." This form of the hymn has been repeated in several collections in Great Britain, and America.
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)
Martin Luther's versification of the Lord's Prayer was set to this tune in Valentin Schumann's hymnal, Geistliche Lieder (1539); the tune, whose composer remains unknown, had some earlier use. The tune name derives from Luther's German incipit: “Vater unser im Himmelreich….” Because VATER UNSE…