Great Hymn, Great Tune: How Sweet and Awesome Is the Place

Last week I featured a “Great Hymn, Not So Great Tune.”  This week I want to feature a “Great Hymn, Great Tune.”  I have discovered several gems in the Trinity Hymnal this year and one of my favorites of these gems is “How Sweet and Awesome Is the Place.” Not only do I love the words, I believe that the tune is great as well. It really does reinforce the words that we are singing. The tune has a sense of awe and wonder and evokes a sense of God’s faithfulness and mercy to an undeserving people. The midi file here doesn’t do the tune justice, but here are the words for you to meditate on:

How Sweet and Awesome is the Place

How sweet and awesome is the place
With Christ within the doors,
While everlasting love displays
The choicest of her stores!

While all our hearts and all our songs
Join to admire the feast,
Each of us cry, with thankful tongues,
“Lord, why was I a guest?

“Why was I made to hear Thy voice,
And enter while there’s room,
When thousands make a wretched choice,
And rather starve than come?”

’Twas the same love that spread the feast
That sweetly drew us in;
Else we had still refused to taste,
And perished in our sin.

Pity the nations, O our God!
Constrain the earth to come;
Send Thy victorious Word abroad,
And bring the strangers home.

We long to see Thy churches full,
That all the chosen race
May with one voice, and heart and soul,
Sing Thy redeeming grace.

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