This is the original text of this hymn as it appeared in the 1827 Hymns adapted to the Weekly Service of the Church Year. It was originally written for use on the Twenty-Fourth Sunday after Trinity Sunday.
Note: The subject matter of this hymn is also most appropriate for the holy season of Advent.
To conquer and to save, the Son of God
Came to His own in great humility,
Who wont to ride on cherub wings abroad,
And round Him wrap the mantle of the sky.
The mountains bent their necks to form His road;
The clouds dropt down their fatness from on high;
Beneath His feet the wild waves softly flow’d,
And the winds kiss’d His garment tremblingly!
The grave unbolted half his grisly door,
(For darkness and the deep had heard His fame,
Nor longer might their ancient rule endure;
The mightiest of mankind stood hush’d and tame:
And, trooping on strong wing, His angels came
To work His will, and kingdom to secure:
No strength He needed save His Father’s name;
Babes were His heralds, and His friends the poor!
Words: Reginald Heber, publ. 1827.
Tune: “Newkirk” Abraham D. Merrill, 1845.