Give thanks unto the Lord our God, For gracious is he

Give thanks unto the Lord our God, For gracious is he

Author: William Kethe
Published in 2 hymnals

Representative Text

1 Give thanks unto the Lord our God,
for very kind is he;
And that his mercy hath no end
all mortal men may see.

2 Such as the Lord redeemed hath
with thanks shall praise his Name,
And shew how they from foes were freed
and how he wrought the same.

3 He gather'd them forth of the lands,
that lay so far about,
From east to west, from north to south
his hand did find them out.

4 They wander'd in the wilderness,
and strayed from the way,
Finding no city where to dwell,
that might serve for their stay:

5 Whose thirst and hunger was so great
within those desarts void,
That faintness them assaulted, and
their souls greatly annoy'd.

6Then did they cry in their distress
unto the Lord for aid,
Who did remove their troublous state,
according as they pray'd:

7 And by the way which was most right
he led them like a guide;
That they might to their city go,
and safely there abide.

8 Let men therefore before the Lord
confess his goodness then,
And shew the wonders that he doth
before the sons of men.

9 For he their empty souls sustain'd
whom thirst had made to faint;
Their hungry souls with goodness fed,
and heard their sad complaint.

10 Such as do dwell in darkness deep,
where they on death do wait,
Fast bound to bear such grievous pains,
as iron chains do threat;

The Second Part.

11 Because against the words of God
they proudly did rebel,
Esteeming light his counsels high,
which do so far excel.

12 But when he humbled them full low,
then they fell down with grief;
And none was found that could them help,
or give them some relief.

13 Then did they cry in their distress
unto the Lord for aid,
Who did remove their troublous state,
according as they pray'd:

14 For he from darkness brought them out,
and from death's dreadful shade,
Bursting with force the iron bands,
which them before did lade.

15 Let men therefore before the Lord
confess his goodness then,
And shew the wonders that the doth
before the sons of men.

16 For he threw down the gates of brass
with strong and mighty hand,
The iron bars in sunder brake
nothing could him withstand.

17 The foolish folk great plagues do feel,
by reason of their sin,
And for the great transgressions which
they still continue in.

18 Their soul abhorred all sorts of meat,
no relish they could have
By which means they were almost brought
unto the very grave.

19 Then did they cry in their distress
unto the Lord for aid,
Who did remove their troublous state
according as they pray'd:

20 For then he sent to them his word,
which health did soon restore,
And brought them from those dangers deep,
wherein they were before.

The Third Part.

21 Let men therefore before the Lord
confess his goodness then,
And shew the wonders that he doth
before the sons of men:

22 And let them offer sacrifice
to him most thankfully,
And speak of all his wondrous works
with gladness and with joy.

23 Such as in ships and brittle barks
unto the seas descend;
Their merchandise through fearful floods
to compass and to end;

24 These men are forced to behold
the Lord's works what they be,
And in the dreadful deep the same
most marvelous they see.

25 For at his word the stormy wind
ariseth in a rage,
And stirreth up the surges so,
that nought can them asswage.

26 Then they are lifted up so high,
the clouds they seem to gain,
And plunging down the depth, until
their souls consume with pain:

27 And like a drunkard to and fro,
now here, now there they reel,
As men who had their reason lost,
and had no sense to feel.

28 Then did they cry in their distress
unto the Lord for aid,
Who did remove their troublous state,
according as they pray'd:

29 For with his word the Lord doth make
the sturdy storms to cease,
So that the waves from their great rage
are brought to rest and peace.

30 Then are they glad when rest is come,
which they so much did crave,
And to the hav'n by him are brought,
which they so fain would have.

The Fourth Part

31 Let men therefore before the Lord
confess his goodness then,
And shew the wonders that he doth
before the sons of men.

32 Let them in presence of the folk
with praise extol his Name,
And where the elders use to sit,
there let them do the same.

33 The wilderness he often makes
with waters to abound,
And water-springs he often turns
to dry and parched ground:

34 A fruitful land with pleasure deck'd,
full barren does he make.
When on their sins that dwell therein
he does just vengeance take.

35 Again, the wilderness full rude
he maketh fruit to bear,
With pleasant springs of water clear,
though none before were there,

36 Wherein such hungry souls are set,
as he hath freely chose,
That they a city may them build
to dwell in safe from foes;

37 That they may sow their pleasant land,
and vineyards also plant,
To yield them fruits of such increase,
that they may have no want.

38 They multiply exceedingly,
the Lord does bless them so,
Who also maketh the brute beasts
in number great to grow.

39 But when the faithful are brought low
by the oppressors stout,
diminishing through many plagues
that compass them about:

40 Then doth he princes bring to shame,
which did them sore oppress,
And likewise caused them to err,
when in the wilderness.

41 But yet the poor he raiseth up
out of his troubles deep,
And often doth his train augment,
like to a flock of sheep.

42 The righteous shall behold this sight,
and also much rejoice;
Whereas the wicked and perverse
with grief shall stop their voice.

43 But who is wise, that now full well
he may these things record?
For certainly such shall perceive
the kindness of the Lord.

Source: The Whole Book of Psalms #CVII

Author: William Kethe

William Kethe (b. Scotland [?], d. Dorset England, c. 1594). Although both the time and place of Kethe's birth and death are unknown, scholars think he was a Scotsman. A Protestant, he fled to the continent during Queen Mary's persecution in the late 1550s. He lived in Geneva for some time but traveled to Basel and Strasbourg to maintain contact with other English refugees. Kethe is thought to be one of the scholars who translated and published the English-language Geneva Bible (1560), a version favored over the King James Bible by the Pilgrim fathers. The twenty-five psalm versifications Kethe prepared for the Anglo-Genevan Psalter of 1561 were also adopted into the Scottish Psalter of 1565. His versification of Psalm 100 (All People that… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Give thanks unto the Lord our God, For gracious is he
Author: William Kethe
Source:
Language: English
Publication Date: 2005
Copyright: This text may still be under copyright because it was published in 2005.

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The Whole Book of Psalms #CVII

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The Whole Booke of Psalmes #63

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