It is a thing most wonderful

It is a thing most wonderful,
almost too wonderful to be,
that God's own Son should come from heaven,
and die to save a child like me.

And yet I know that it is true:
he chose a poor and humble lot,
and wept, and toiled, and mourned, and died,
for love of those who loved him not.

I cannot tell how he would love
a child so weak and full of sin;
his love must be most wonderful,
if he could die my love to win.

I sometimes think about the cross,
and shut my eyes, and try to see
the cruel nails and crown of thorns
and Jesus crucified for me.

But even could I see him die,
I could but see a little part
of that great love, which, like a fire,
is always burning in his heart.

It is most wonderful to know
his love for me so free and sure;
but 'tis more wonderful to see
my love for him so faint and poor.

And yet I want to love thee, Lord;
O light the flame within my heart,
and I will love thee more and more,
until I see thee as thou art.

Words: William Walsham How (1823-1897), 1872

MIDI: Herongate (English traditional, arranged Ralph Vaughan Williams, 1872-1958)

Meter: LM

Hymnal, Year Number Tunes Other comments
Hymns Ancient & Modern, 1861-1874      
The Anglican Hymn Book, 1868       
The Sarum Hymnal, 1869      
The Church Hymnal, 1871 (Hall & Whiteley)      
The Church Hymnal, 1874 (Goodrich & Gilbert)      
The Church Hymnal, 1874 (Tucker & Rousseau)      
The Church Hymnal, 1874 (Hutchins)      
Church Hymns with Tunes, 1874      
Church Hymnal (Church of Ireland), 1874      
Hymns Ancient & Modern, Standard, 1875-1924      
A Church of England Hymn Book, 1879      
The Universal Hymn Book, 1885      
The Hymnal Companion, 1890      
The Church Hymnal, Revised and Enlarged, 1892 (Darlington)      
The Church Hymnal, Revised and Enlarged, 1892 (Parker)      
The Church Hymnal, Revised and Enlarged, 1892 (Hutchins)      
The Church Hymnal, Revised and Enlarged, 1892 (Tucker & Rousseau)      
The Church Hymnal, Revised and Enlarged, 1892 (Helfenstein)      
The Church Hymnal, Revised and Enlarged, 1892 (Messiter)      
The Yattendon Hymnal, 1900
Church Hymns, New Edition, 1903 628 Gideon  
Hymns Ancient & Modern, New Edition, 1904      
The English Hymnal, 1906 597 Herongate  
The Book of Common Praise, 1908      
The Hymnal 1916      
Church Hymnal for the Christian Year, 1917      
Church Hymnal (Church of Ireland), 1919      
Church Hymnal Revised, 1920
The Oxford Hymn Book, 1925      
Songs of Praise, 1925 428 Cromer  
Songs of Praise, Enlarged Edition, 1931      
The Book of Common Praise, 1938      
The Hymnal 1940      
Hymns Ancient & Modern, Revised, 1950 435 Alstone  
The Mirfield Mission Hymn Book, 1955 055 Herongate  
Church Hymnal (Church of Ireland), 1960 614 Herongate  
Anglican Hymn Book, 1965 350 Herongate  
The Hymn Book 1971      
The Australian Hymn Book / With One Voice, 1977 171 Herongate  
The Hymnal 1982      
Hymns Ancient & Modern, New Standard, 1983 070 Alstone, Herongate  
The New English Hymnal, 1985 084 Herongate  
Hymns for Today's Church, second edition, 1988 131 Gideon, Herongate  
Church Family Worship, 1988 232 Gideon, Herongate  
Hymns Old & New, New Anglican Edition, 1996 255 Gideon, Herongate  
Common Praise (The Anglican Church of Canada), 1998      
Together in Song: The Australian Hymn Book II, 1999      
Sing Glory, 1999 557 Herongate  
Complete Mission Praise, 2000 346 Gideon  
Common Praise: Hymns Ancient & Modern, 2000 109 Herongate  
Hymns Old & New, Complete Anglican Edition, 2000 333 Gideon, Herongate  
Church Hymnal (Church of Ireland), 2000 226 Herongate  

Website compiled by Steve Benner, 1999-2003.