James Montgomery (b. Irvine, Ayrshire, Scotland, 1771; d. Sheffield, Yorkshire, England, 1854), the son of Moravian parents who died on a West Indies mission field while he was in boarding school, Montgomery inherited a strong religious bent, a passion for missions, and an independent mind. He was editor of the Sheffield Iris (1796-1827), a newspaper that sometimes espoused radical causes. Montgomery was imprisoned briefly when he printed a song that celebrated the fall of the Bastille and again when he described a riot in Sheffield that reflected unfavorably on a military commander. He also protested against slavery, the lot of boy chimney sweeps, and lotteries. Associated with Christians of various persuasions, Montgomery supported missio… Go to person page >
It is the Lord, behold His hand. J. Montgomery. [In Times of Distress.] Written Aug. 22, 1832, during the epidemic of cholera in Sheffield, and for use in that town (Montgomery Manuscript). It was published in Montgomery's Original Hymns, 1853, No. 290, in 6 stanzas of 4 lines, and entitled "During the Cholera —Confession and Supplication." In Kennedy, 1863, No. 457, it is abbreviated, and altered. The companion hymn, also written on Aug. 22, 1832, and for the same purpose, was "Let the land mourn through all its coasts." This was published in the Original Hymns, 1853, No. 289, in 6 stanza of 4 lines, and is in common use in Great Britain and America. The hymns, "Sing Hallelujah, sing," and "Walking on the winged wind," were written by Montgomery at the close of the same year as a "Thanksgiving for Deliverance from the Cholera" (M. MSS), and also published in his Original Hymns, 1853.