1 The King shall come when morning dawns
and light triumphant breaks,
when beauty gilds the eastern hills,
and life to joy awakes.
2 Not as of old a little child
to bear, and fight, and die,
but crowned with glory like the sun
that lights the morning sky.
3 O brighter than the rising morn
when He, victorious, rose
and left the lonesome place of death,
despite the rage of foes.
4 O brighter than that glorious morn
shall this fair morning be,
when Christ, our King, in beauty comes,
and we His face shall see.
5 The King shall come when morning dawns,
and earth's dark night is past;
O haste the rising of that morn,
the day that aye shall last.
6 And let the endless bliss begin,
by weary saints foretold,
when right shall triumph over wrong,
and truth shall be extolled.
7 The King shall come when morning dawns,
and light and beauty brings;
"Hail, Christ the Lord!" Thy people pray,
come quickly, King of kings!
Source: Hymns to the Living God #101
|First Line:||The King shall come when morning dawns|
|Author:||John Brownlie (1907)|
st. 1 = Luke 21:25-28, 2 Pet. 1:19
st. 5 = Rev. 22:20
Infused with the imagery of morning light typical of early Greek hymnody, this Advent text stirs hope in the hearts of all who look forward to the return of Christ. “The King Shall Come” is a confession of faith in the sure return of our Lord; his coming again will occur in a blaze of glory, which will far surpass his earthly death and resurrection. The text concludes with a paraphrase of the ancient prayer of the church-"Maranatha," or "Lord, come quickly" (Rev. 22:20).
The text was included in Hymns from the East (1907), a collection by John Brownlie (b. Glasgow, Scotland, 1859; d. Crieff, Perthshire, Scotland, 1925) of translations and what he called "suggestions" of devotional material from the Eastern Orthodox tradition. Because no Greek original has ever been found, scholars now assume that the text is not a translation but a "suggestion": an original text by Brownlie that reflects his wide knowledge of Greek hymnody. The Psalter Hymnal includes the original stanzas 1, 4 and 7.
A Presbyterian pastor in the Free Church of Scotland, Brownlie was educated at Glasgow University and at the Free Church College. He served for many years as pastor of the Free Church of Portpatrick, Wigtownshire. Brownlie's contribution to church music was significant: he published three volumes of original hymn texts, including Pilgrim Songs (1892); he wrote a handbook (1899) to the 1898 edition of the Scottish Presbyterian hymnal, The Church Hymnary; and he published several volumes of English translations of Greek and Latin hymns, including Hymns from East and West (1898) and Hymns from the East (1907).
An eschatological text suitable as a morning hymn anytime in the church year, but especially for services (during Advent) that focus on Christ's return.
--Psalter Hymnal Handbook