Redeeming love

Full Text

1 Now begin the heavenly theme,
Sing aloud in Jesu's Name;
Ye who Jesu's kindness prove
Triumph in redeeming love.

2 Ye, who see the Father's grace
Beaming in the Savior's face
As to Canaan on ye move
Praise and bless redeeming love.

3 Mourning souls dry up your tears,
Banish all your guilty fears;
See your guilt and curse remove,
Cancelled by redeeming love.

4 Ye, alas! who long have been
Willing slaves of death and sin;
Now from bliss no longer rove,
Stop--and taste redeeming love.

5 Welcome all, by sin oppressed,
Welcome all to Jesus Christ;
Nothing brought him from above,
Nothing but redeeming love.

6 He subdued the infernal powers,
His tremendous foes and ours,
From their cursed empire drove,
Mighty in redeeming love.

7 Hither then your music bring,
Strike aloud each joyful string;
Mortals join the hosts above,
Join to praise redeeming love.

The Christian's duty, exhibited in a series of hymns, 1791

Author: John Langford

Langford, John. The time and place of this person's birth are unknown. He is said to have been connected with the early Methodists, and then to have become a member of the Baptist church in Eagle Street, London. In 1765 he began to preach in a chapel called Blacksfields, in Gainsford Street, London, and in the following year was ordained pastor. There he remained for 12 years, then removed to Rose Lane, Ratcliff, and afterwards to a small place in Bunhill Row. But his imprudent conduct compelled him at length to give up preaching. He inherited considerable property, but squandered it in extravagance, and died in great wretchedness about 1790. J. Langford published a few Sermons, and, in 1776, a collection of Hymns & Spiritual Songs, which… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Now begins the heavenly theme
Title: Redeeming love
Author: John Langford
Meter: 7.7.7.7
Language: English

Notes

Now begin the heavenly theme. [Redeeming Love.] The authorship of this hymn is unknown. The earliest form in which it is found differs widely from that followed in modern hymnals. In 1763 it appeared in the Appendix to M. Madan's Psalms and Hymns, as No. clxxii., thus:—

"Redeeming Love.
i.
"Now begin the Heav'nly Theme,
Sing aloud in Jesu's Name,
Ye, who Jesu's Kindness prove
Triumph in Redeeming Love.

ii.
“Ye, who see the Father's Grace
Beaming in the Saviour's Face
As to Canaan on ye move
Praise and bless Redeeming Love.

iii.
“Mourning Souls dry up your Tears,
Banish all your guilty Fears,
See your Guilt and Curse remove,
Cancell'd by Redeeming Love.

iv.
44 Ye, alas! who long have been
Willing Slaves of Death and Sin,
Now from Bliss no longer rove,
Stop—and taste Redeeming Love.

v.
“Welcome all by Sin oppress,
Welcome, to his sacred Rest,
Nothing brought Him from above,
Nothing but Redeeming Love.

vi.
“He subdu'd th’ Infernal Pow'rs,
His tremendous Foes and ours
From their cursed Empire drove,
Mighty in Redeeming Love.

vii.
“Hither then your Musick bring,
Strike aloud each joyful String,
Mortals join the Hosts above,
Join to praise Redeeming Love."

In this form, or with alterations, the hymn appeared in about fifty collections between 1763 and 1833, and in all it was given anonymously, except in that of Dobell, 1806, who quoted it as from "Langford's Collection” This reference is to the Hymns and Spiritual Songs published by John Langford (p. 639, ii.) in 1776, and in which the hymn appeared. In Langford’s 2nd edition he marked all his own hymns with an asterisk, but this hymn is unmarked. This is clear evidence against his authorship. The error of ascribing the hymn to Langford arose through the careless editing of E. Bickersteth, who in the Index of his Christian Psalmody, 1833, gave the hymn as "Now begin the, Langford." This was copied by later compilers, some expanding the name into "John Langford,” and others into "William Langford," and all basing their guesses on an error. The earliest date to which it has been traced is Madan's Appendix, 1763. Failing evidence that it was written by Madan, we must give it as Anon. No. 982, in Kennedy, 1863, "Now the heavenly joy proclaim," is an altered form of this hymn.

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)

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