STLT#142, Let There Be Light

It is easier to write about things you care deeply about, whether for good or for ill, than it is to write about things that are, well, fine, and don’t really bother you one way or the other.

Such is the case here. This is a fine hymn. Sure. It works. It’s got decent lyrics but not ones I’m swooning over. Oddly, the tune sounds like an introit, and I can imagine using the last verse exactly that way. It’s a bit weirder singing it four times – I can’t imagine if we sang all six verses; for what it’s worth, the two verses omitted are inspired by the Lord’s prayer but certainly are not out of line for our theologies:

Hallow our love,
hallow the deaths of martyrs,
hallow their holy freedom,
hallowed be your name.

Your kingdom come,
your Spirit turn to language,
your people speak together,
your Spirit never fade.

So…yeah. Decent modern hymn from two Canadians; what’s funny is that in Between the Lines, James has a nice biography of the composer, Robert J. B. Fleming. And for the lyricist? “Francis W. Davis (1936-1976) was a Canadian.” So there’s that. Sorry.

Anyway, here’s our decent hymn, for which I have no real feeling one way or the other.

Let there be light,
let there be understanding,
let all the nations gather,
let them be face to face.

Open our lips,
open our minds to ponder,
open the door of concord
opening into grace.

Perish the sword,
perish the angry judgment,
perish the bombs and hunger,
perish the fight for gain.

Let there be light,
open our hearts to wonder,
perish the way of terror,
hallow the world God made.

(Disclaimer: I know all Canadians are not Doug and Bob McKenzie, but I just could not resist. Plus, it got you to click….)

Support this site

I am an entrepreneurial minister, which means I am a freelancer, and every part of my income comes from the work I do. The Hymn by Hymn Project was and is a labor of love, but I now am incurring increasing costs for hosting the site.

If everyone who visited gave just $5, those costs would be covered in a single week.

Whether you give once or monthly, your generosity will keep Hymn by Hymn free and available to to the tens of thousands of people who benefit from it.

Please support the project!


Learn more about my ministry at The Art of Meaning

Read my thoughts about congregational life at Hold My Chalice