Praise God, from whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him, all creatures here below;
Praise Him above, ye heav'nly host;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
Baptist Hymnal, 1991
|First Line:||Praise God, from whom all blessings flow (Ken)|
|Title:||Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow|
|Author:||Thomas Ken (1674)|
|Language:||English; Latin; Welsh|
This short text calls upon all of creation, on earth and in heaven, to offer praise to the Trinity, in recognition that all good things come from God.
In about 1674, Bishop Thomas Ken wrote three hymns for morning, evening, and midnight as an addition to his A Manual of Prayers for the Use of the Scholars of Winchester College. These hymns were published by Ken in a pamphlet in 1694, and were included in the Manual in its 1695 edition. “Praise God, From Whom All Blessings Flow” was the text of the final, doxological stanza for all three of them. It is now well-known on its own as a doxology, or as a concluding stanza for other hymns, such as “All Creatures of Our God and King,” or “All People That on Earth Do Dwell.”
OLD HUNDREDTH is by far the most common tune to which this text is sung. It is sometimes called SAVOY, or GENEVAN 134 after its original text in the Genevan Psalter. This psalm tune is often attributed to Louis Bourgeois, who edited the Genevan Psalter of 1551, in which it first appeared. The tune became associated with William Kethe's version of Psalm 100 in the Anglo-Genevan Psalter of 1560, from which the name OLD HUNDREDTH is derived.
There are two versions of the tune with respect to rhythm. Usually, when the tune is used with “All People That on Earth Do Dwell,” the original rhythm is maintained. However, many congregations are more familiar with the altered, isorhythmic version, because that is often the version sung with this doxology.
This song is often sung at the beginning of worship or at the presentation of the offering. In some churches, it is sung every Sunday. To avoid monotony, try a longer setting of the Doxology text to original music such as the choral arrangement by David Hedrick titled “Alleluia, Praise God!” (sung unaccompanied or with a simple string bass line), or a tune by an anonymous nineteenth-century American composer, edited by William Rowan in “Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow.” Because this text is a single, well-known stanza, it is often used as a bridge within a larger choral anthem. Sometimes it is set to original music, and at other times, the traditional tune is used. “Sing!” is an original composition by Cindy Berry, in which the doxology text is used as a bridge, set to an altered version of OLD HUNDREDTH. Another example of this very short text as part of a larger work is in “Thanks and Blessings Flow,” in which “Praise God, From Whom All Blessings Flow,” set to original music, is the bridge before the last verse of “Now Thank We All Our God.” Optional brass, percussion, and congregational participation are included.
Tiffany Shomsky, Hymnary.org