the doxology is the 4th verse

my friend, the brilliant contemplative musician jeff johnson, sent an email the other day mentioning that he’d stumbled onto the hymn from which we get the doxology sung in so many churches. i’m surprised to say i’d never thought about (let alone heard about) where the doxology came from. an anglican priest in england (named thomas ken) wrote it in the 17th century!

beautiful words. read ’em slowly. pause between verses.

Awake, my soul, and with the sun
thy daily course of duty run.
Cast off dull sloth, and joyful rise
to pay thy morning sacrifice.

All praise to thee, who safe hast kept
and hast refreshed me while I slept!
Grant, Lord, when I from death shall wake,
I may of endless life partake.

All praise to thee, my God, this night
for all the blessings of the light.
Keep me, oh keep me, King of Kings,
beneath Thine own almighty wings.

Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow.
Praise Him, all creatures here below.
Praise Him above, ye heavenly host.
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

UPDATE: astute reader debbie has brought to the attention of ysmarko that there are EVEN MORE verses! here they are:

Awake, my soul, and with the sun
Thy daily stage of duty run;
Shake off dull sloth, and joyful rise,
To pay thy morning sacrifice.

Thy precious time misspent, redeem,
Each present day thy last esteem,
Improve thy talent with due care;
For the great day thyself prepare.

By influence of the Light divine
Let thy own light to others shine.
Reflect all Heaven’s propitious ways
In ardent love, and cheerful praise.

In conversation be sincere;
Keep conscience as the noontide clear;
Think how all seeing God thy ways
And all thy secret thoughts surveys.

Wake, and lift up thyself, my heart,
And with the angels bear thy part,
Who all night long unwearied sing
High praise to the eternal King.

All praise to Thee, Who safe has kept
And hast refreshed me while I slept
Grant, Lord, when I from death shall wake
I may of endless light partake.

Heav’n is, dear Lord, where’er Thou art,
O never then from me depart;
For to my soul ’tis hell to be
But for one moment void of Thee.

Lord, I my vows to Thee renew;
Disperse my sins as morning dew.
Guard my first springs of thought and will,
And with Thyself my spirit fill.

Direct, control, suggest, this day,
All I design, or do, or say,
That all my powers, with all their might,
In Thy sole glory may unite.

I would not wake nor rise again
And Heaven itself I would disdain,
Wert Thou not there to be enjoyed,
And I in hymns to be employed.

Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him, all creatures here below;
Praise Him above, ye heavenly host;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

9 thoughts on “the doxology is the 4th verse”

  1. interesting that it’s almost to be sung in two parts…two verses in the morning, two verses in the evening. rounding out your day with thanks & praise. thanks for sharing…

  2. yeah, that would be a cool meditation to start and end the day. I love it. I must admit though that at NYWC I trip out a bit when your buddy leads worship. It’s really cool, but it’s so different for me that it’s a definite discipline to get focused.

  3. Jeff Johnson is such a wonderful gift to the Body of Christ! I am so grateful that YS has been able to partner with him. Thanks Marko for sharing the origins of the doxology – it would be great to just hear the “doxology” make a “come back” in many of our evangelical services. But the words of this old hymn were refreshing to me today.

  4. It never fails to amaze me to discover these older hymns and the words used to express praise to God. Charismatics sometimes miss out on doing only choruses. I’m one of those weird charismatics that wants to see more mix of liturgy (hymns and other forms) and charismatic worship (choruses, shouting, etc.). I haven’t seen it done well often, but the few times I have experienced it, it’s been a tremendous time of worship in so many ways.

  5. i have always loved the doxology. we used to sing it every week after the tithes/ offerings. i also miss ‘bless be the tie that binds’ we used to sing that after communion while holding hands spanning the aisles. some consider it dorky but it was really cool and you felt like the body was unified if even for that moment.

  6. Mark, Thomas Ken wrote this for his students at university where he taught, as their “morning hymn.” What we know as the Doxology is actually the last verse of the hymn. Sweet.

  7. Cool. Actually, this was just one of many. Most hymns had a doxology added to them in the English Church.

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