Scripture Verse

I…heard the voice of many angels, numbering thousands upon thousands. Revelation 5:11


Charles Wesley (1707–1788)

Words: Charles Wes­ley, 1739.

Music: Az­mon Carl G. Glä­ser, 1828. Ar­ranged by Lo­well Ma­son, Mo­dern Psalm­ist, 1839 (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tunes:

Lowell Mason (1792–1872)

Wesley wrote this hymn to com­me­mo­rate the first an­ni­ver­sa­ry of his con­ver­sion to Christ. He notes in his jour­nal:

Origin of the Hymn

Sunday, May 21, 1738. I waked in ex­pec­ta­tion of His com­ing. At nine my bro­ther and some friends came and sang a hymn to the Ho­ly Ghost. My com­fort and hope were here­by in­creased. In about half an hour they went.

I be­took my­self to pray­er the sub­stance as follows: O Je­sus, thou hast said, I will come un­to you; thou hast said, I will send the Com­fort­er un­to you. thou hast said, My Fa­ther and I will come un­to you, and make our abode with you.

Thou art my God, who canst not lie. I whol­ly re­ly up­on thy most true pro­mise: ac­comp­lish it in thy time and manner.

Still I felt a vio­lent op­po­si­tion and re­luc­tance to be­lieve, yet still the Spir­it of God strove with my own and the evil spir­it till by de­grees he chased away the dark­ness of my un­be­lief. I found my­self con­vinced, I knew not how or when, and im­me­di­ate­ly fell to in­ter­ces­sion.

This work first ap­peared in Hymns and Sac­red Po­ems in 1740. The stan­za that be­gins O for a thou­sand tongues to sing is verse se­ven of Wes­ley’s orig­in­al po­em.


O for a thou­sand tongues to sing
My great Re­deem­er’s praise,
The glo­ries of my God and king,
The tri­umphs of His grace!

My gra­cious mas­ter and my God,
Assist me to pro­claim,
To spread through all the earth abroad
The hon­ors of Thy name.

Jesus! the name that charms our fears,
That bids our sor­rows cease;
’Tis mu­sic in the sin­ner’s ears,
’Tis life, and health, and peace.

He breaks the pow­er of can­celed sin,
He sets the pri­son­er free;
His blood can make the foul­est clean,
His blood availed for me.

He speaks, and, list­en­ing to His voice,
New life the dead re­ceive,
The mourn­ful, brok­en hearts re­joice,
The hum­ble poor be­lieve.

Hear Him, ye deaf; His praise, ye dumb,
Your loos­ened tongues em­ploy;
Ye blind, be­hold your Sav­ior come,
And leap, ye lame, for joy.

In Christ your head, you then shall know,
Shall feel your sins for­giv­en;
Anticipate your hea­ven be­low,
And own that love is hea­ven.

Glory to God, and praise and love
Be ev­er, ev­er giv­en,
By saints be­low and saints above,
The church in earth and Hea­ven.

On this glad day the glo­ri­ous sun
Of right­eous­ness arose;
On my be­night­ed soul He shone
And filled it with re­pose.

Sudden ex­pired the le­gal strife,
’Twas then I ceased to grieve;
My se­cond, real, liv­ing life
I then be­gan to live.

Then with my heart I first be­lieved,
Believed with faith di­vine,
Power with the Ho­ly Ghost re­ceived
To call the Sav­ior mine.

I felt my Lord’s aton­ing blood
Close to my soul ap­plied;
Me, me He loved, the Son of God,
For me, for me He died!

I found and owned His pro­mise true,
Ascertained of my part,
My par­don passed in hea­ven I knew
When writ­ten on my heart.

Look un­to Him, ye na­tions, own
Your God, ye fall­en race;
Look, and be saved through faith alone,
Be jus­ti­fied by grace.

See all your sins on Je­sus laid:
The Lamb of God was slain,
His soul was once an of­fer­ing made
For ev­ery soul of man.

Awake from guil­ty na­ture’s sleep,
And Christ shall give you light,
Cast all your sins into the deep,
And wash the Æthi­op white.

Harlots and pub­li­cans and thieves
In holy tri­umph join!
Saved is the sin­ner that be­lieves
From crimes as great as mine.

Murderers and all ye hell­ish crew,
Ye sons of lust and pride,
Believe the Sav­ior died for you;
For me the Sav­ior died.

With me, your chief, ye then shall know,
Shall feel your sins for­giv­en;
Anticipate your hea­ven below,
And own that love is hea­ven.