Thus speaks the heathen: How shall man

Thus speaks the heathen: How shall man

Author: John Logan
Tune: SONG 67
Published in 3 hymnals

Representative Text

1 Thus speaks the heathen: How shall man
the Pow’r Supreme adore?
With what accepted off’rings come
his mercy to implore?
2 Shall clouds of incense to the skies
with grateful odour speed?
or victims from a thousand hills
upon the altar bleed?

3 Does justice nobler blood demand
to save the sinner’s life?
Shall, trembling, in his offspring’s side
the father plunge the knife?
4 No: God rejects the bloody rites
which blindfold zeal began;
his oracles of truth proclaim
the message brought to man.

5 He what is good hath clearly shown,
O favoured race! to thee;
and what doth God require of those
who bend to him the knee?
6 Thy deeds, let sacred justice rule;
thy heart, let mercy fill;
and, walking humbly with thy God,
to him resign thy will.

Source: The Irish Presbyterian Hymnbook #R31

Author: John Logan

Logan, John, son of a farmer, born at Fala, Midlothian, 1748, and educated at Edinburgh University, in due course entering the ministry of the Church of Scotland and becoming the minister of South Leith in 1770. During the time he held this charge he delivered a course of lectures on philosophy and history with much success. While he was thus engaged, the chair of Universal History in the University became vacant; but as a candidate he was unsuccessful. A tragedy, entitled Runnamede, followed. He offered it to the manager of Covent Garden Theatre, but it was interdicted by the Lord Chamberlain "upon suspicion of having a seditious tendency." It was subsequently acted in Edinburgh. In 1775 he formed one of the Committee by whom the Translati… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Thus speaks the heathen: How shall man
Author: John Logan
Copyright: Public Domain



SONG 67 was published as a setting for Psalm 1 in Edmund Prys's Welsh Llyfr y Psalmau (1621). Erik Routley (PHH 31) suggests that the tune should be ascribed to Prys. Orlando Gibbons (PHH 167) supplied a new bass line for the melody when it was published with a number of his own tunes in George With…

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The Irish Presbyterian Hymnbook #R31

Include 2 pre-1979 instances
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