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Crown Him With Many Crowns

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Date:
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1874, 1852
Matthew Bridges,
Godfrey Thing
George Elvey

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Crown Him with many crowns, the Lamb upon His throne.
Hark! How the heavenly anthem drowns all music but its own.
Awake, my soul, and sing of Him who died for thee,
And hail Him as thy matchless King through all eternity.

Crown Him the virgin’s Son, the God incarnate born,
Whose arm those crimson trophies won which now His brow adorn;
Fruit of the mystic rose, as of that rose the stem;
The root whence mercy ever flows, the Babe of Bethlehem.

Crown Him the Son of God, before the worlds began,
And ye who tread where He hath trod, crown Him the Son of Man;
Who every grief hath known that wrings the human breast,
And takes and bears them for His own, that all in Him may rest.

Crown Him the Lord of life, who triumphed over the grave,
And rose victorious in the strife for those He came to save.
His glories now we sing, who died, and rose on high,
Who died eternal life to bring, and lives that death may die.

Crown Him the Lord of peace, whose power a scepter sways
From pole to pole, that wars may cease, and all be prayer and praise.
His reign shall know no end, and round His piercèd feet
Fair flowers of paradise extend their fragrance ever sweet.

Crown Him the Lord of love, behold His hands and side,
Those wounds, yet visible above, in beauty glorified.
No angel in the sky can fully bear that sight,
But downward bends his burning eye at mysteries so bright.

Crown Him the Lord of Heaven, enthroned in worlds above,
Crown Him the King to Whom is given the wondrous name of Love.
Crown Him with many crowns, as thrones before Him fall;
Crown Him, ye kings, with many crowns, for He is King of all.

Crown Him the Lord of lords, who over all doth reign,
Who once on earth, the incarnate Word, for ransomed sinners slain,
Now lives in realms of light, where saints with angels sing
Their songs before Him day and night, their God, Redeemer, King.

Crown Him the Lord of years, the Potentate of time,
Creator of the rolling spheres, ineffably sublime.
All hail, Redeemer, hail! For Thou has died for me;
Thy praise and glory shall not fail throughout eternity.

*Note - Matthew Bridges wrote verses 1, 4-6, & 9 in 1852. Godfrey Thring wrote verses 2-3 in 1874.


Story:

It is not surprising that such a magnificent opening line as "Crown Him With Many Crowns" should be used by different hymn-writers. But it is not known whether the two writers of this hymn ever met. Matthew Bridges was one of the considerable group of Anglicans who were influenced by Newman and Faber. Godfrey Thring, a much younger man, became a Prebendary of Wells Cathedral in 1876 and it was he who altered and rearranged Bridges' hymn so that both their names now go with it in the hymn books.

But even good first lines are not always fashioned straight away. The first line of this great hymn used to be "Crown Him with crowns of gold" - a line that was for many years popular in the United States, being considered more impressive than any other description.

The five verses celebrate the kingship of Christ each with a definite theme,

Crown Him the Lord of Love
Crown Him the Son of God
Crown Him the Lord of Life
Crown Him the Lord of Peace
Crown Him the Lord of Heaven

thus making the hymn a fine example of Christian teaching about the person of Christ.


Bible Verse

Revelation 19:12 - His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.


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