"THE SPACIOUS FIRMAMENT ON HIGH"
This hymn, based on Psalm 19:1-4, speaks of the testimony of the sun, moon, and stars to their Creator. The word firmament in the first verse refers to the expanse or open space that is visible to us as we look upward from earth; it is the place in which the sun, moon, and stars exist, and might be translated "sky" or "heavens." The third verse reminds us that though these heavenly bodies make no sounds that can be heard by our physical ears, they nonetheless proclaim, to all who think rightly about them, "The hand that made us is divine." The spacious firmament on high, With all the blue ethereal sky, And spangled heav'ns, a shining frame, Their great original proclaim. Th' unwearied sun, from day to day, Does his Creator's pow'r display, And publishes to every land The work of an Almighty hand. Soon as the evening shades prevail, The moon takes up the wondrous tale, And nightly to the list'ning earth Repeats the story of her birth; Whilst all the stars that round her burn, And all the planets in their turn, Confirm the tidings as they roll, And spread the truth from pole to pole. What though in solemn silence all Move round this dark terrestrial ball? What though nor real voice nor sound Amidst their radiant orbs be found? In reason's ear they all rejoice, And utter forth a glorious voice; For ever singing, as they shine, "The hand that made us is divine." Author: Joseph Addison, 1712
Alternative hymns: "I Sing th' Almighty Power of God"; "This Is My Father's World"; or "Day Is Dying in the West"
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