Old Words, Familiar Tunes

About a year ago I purchased a small copy of Gadsby’s Hymnal, a tiny treasure now reprinted in South Korea from the 1838 original printed in Manchester, England. Anyone familiar with long, short, or common meter can sing these scripturally sound lyrics to familiar hymn tunes.  Many styles of music, when combined with thoughtful words, send my soul soaring in praise to the Lord of heaven and earth.

“Sovereign Grace, The Subject of Our Songs,” written by John Newton, will remind you of “Amazing Grace.” Actually, these words fit either the tune of “Amazing Grace,” or “O, For a Thousand Tongues.”

Now may the Lord reveal his face,  And teach our stammering tongues  To make his sovereign reigning grace  The subject of our songs.

No sweeter subject can invite  A sinner’s heart to sing,  Or more display the glorious right  Of our exalted King.

Grace reigns to pardon crimson sins,  To melt the hardest hearts;  And from the work it once begins  It never once departs.

The world and Satan strive in vain  Against the chosen few;  Secured by grace’s conquering reign,  They all shall conquer too.

T’was grace that called our souls at first;  By grace thus far we’ve come;  And grace will help us through the worst,  And lead us safely home.


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