Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise

Walter Chalmers Smith
1824-1908

This hymn is a favorite because it is ALL about God. There is not even a man-centered reaction in it like, your love to me means… or because You did this, I will… It’s all just who God is and that he is completely singular and self-contained in his attributes. He was, is, and always will be fully God no matter who I am or what I do. And the line…take the veil from our faces, the vile from our heart… is pure poetry! (at least I think so)

Immortal, invisible, God only wise,
In light inaccessible hid from our eyes,
Most blessèd, most glorious, the Ancient of Days,
Almighty, victorious, Thy great Name we praise.

Unresting, unhasting, and silent as light,
Nor wanting, nor wasting, Thou rulest in might;
Thy justice, like mountains, high soaring aboveThy clouds,
which are fountains of goodness and love.

To all, life Thou givest, to both great and small;
In all life Thou livest, the true life of all;
We blossom and flourish as leaves on the tree,
And wither and perish—but naught changeth Thee.

Great Father of glory, pure Father of light,
Thine angels adore Thee, all veiling their sight;
But of all Thy rich graces this grace, Lord, impart
Take the veil from our faces, the vile from our heart.

All laud we would render; O help us to see
’Tis only the splendor of light hideth Thee,
And so let Thy glory, Almighty, impart,
Through Christ in His story, Thy Christ to the heart.

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