Philip Doddridge (b. London, England, 1702; d. Lisbon, Portugal, 1751) belonged to the Non-conformist Church (not associated with the Church of England). Its members were frequently the focus of discrimination. Offered an education by a rich patron to prepare him for ordination in the Church of England, Doddridge chose instead to remain in the Non-conformist Church. For twenty years he pastored a poor parish in Northampton, where he opened an academy for training Non-conformist ministers and taught most of the subjects himself. Doddridge suffered from tuberculosis, and when Lady Huntington, one of his patrons, offered to finance a trip to Lisbon for his health, he is reputed to have said, "I can as well go to heaven from Lisbon as from Nort… Go to person page >
Great God of heaven and nature, rise. P. Doddridge. [National Fast.] In the Doddridge Manuscript, No. 83, this hymn is dated "An hymn for the Fast day, Jan. 9, 1739/40." The Fast day was that appointed at the opening of the war with Spain. The hymn was published in J. Orton's (posthumous) edition of Doddridge's Hymns, &c, 1755, No. 368, in 6 stanzas of 4 lines, and with the more general heading, "An Hymn for a Fast-day in Time of War"; and again, with slight variations, in J. D. Humphreys's edition of the same, 1839, No. 395. In some collections, as Mercer, the New Congregational Hymn Book, and others, it is abridged, and begins, "Great God of heaven and earth, arise." It is found in both forms in several modern collections.