Sunday, November 13, 2016
LDS Hymn #25
This is such a fun hymn to sing! The tune is upbeat and a little syncopated. Playing it is a bit of a challenge with that syncopation as well as so many accidentals. But that actually makes it kind of fun, too--once you get it! Written by the talented, "original LDS poet" William W. Phelps, this book has been around since our first LDS hymnal. This hymn is a little about prophets (when first written, very much about Joseph Smith, Jr. but first verse can still apply to the current living prophet), about the Restoration, the Priesthood, the Book of Mormon. Verse 2 and 3 are much more about the Prophet Joseph, and how he helped bring about the Restoration, restore the Priesthood, and translate the Book of Mormon. The fourth verse is all about "that to come." When Brother Phelps wrote the hymn, the Church was very much in its infancy. We are now almost 200 years later. We can see the joy of "that to come" happening now, with promises still to be fulfilled in our future. It is a very uplifting, exciting part of the hymn that all of that which was restored has so much joy and hope and promise for each of us.
From the history book
I like that it points out that Verse 2 ("Joseph he inspires") was present tense when the hymn was written and the early Saints first sang it. It is now in past tense, but can you imagine how wonderful it was to sing about Joseph and the work he was doing to help bring salvation to mankind when he was actually alive? If you notice something off in the rhyming scheme, it is because each verse was originally 2 shorter verses (8 short verses total) and Brother Phelps was using an AAAB for each verse.