1. Love Divine, all loves excelling,
Joy of heav’n, to earth come down:
Fix in us thy humble dwelling,
All thy faithful mercies crown:
Jesus, thou art all compassion,
Pure, unbounded love thou art;
Visit us with thy salvation,
Enter ev’ry trembling heart.
2. Breathe, O breathe thy loving Spirit
Into ev’ry troubled breast;
Let us all in thee inherit,
Let us find the promised rest:
Take away the love of sinning;
Alpha and Omega be;
End of faith, as its Beginning,
Set our hearts at liberty.
3. Come, Almighty to deliver,
Let us all thy life receive;
Suddenly return, and never,
Never more thy temples leave.
Thee we would be always blessing,
Serve thee as thy hosts above,
Pray, and praise thee, without ceasing,
Glory in thy perfect love.
4. Finish, then, thy new creation;
Pure and spotless let us be:
Let us see thy great salvation
Perfectly restored in thee;
Changed from glory into glory,
Till in heav’n we take our place,
Till we cast our crowns before thee,
Lost in wonder, love and praise.
By Charles Wesley
- This hymn extols the love we receive from God through Christ. How is this love different from your love for your spouse, your child, your parent, your best friend?
- Verse 2 reminds us of 1 Corinthians 3:16. It uses the word “love” to speak of the “love” of sinning. How is the love of sinning removed? How do we receive God’s love, the beginning and end of our faith?
- The hymnwriter says, “Suddenly return, and never, never more thy temples leave.” To what event is he referring? Where is the image of Christ’s return fleshed out with worshipers and hymns?
- If we are cleansed, made righteous, and saved for eternity when we receive Christ, what remains to be finished as requested in the fourth verse? Where can we find the image of worshipers casting crowns before God?
- The hymn calls us to an attitude of wonder, love and praise. Who is the object of our wonder, love and praise? What is the difference in the use of the word “salvation” in verse four and our use of the word “salvation” to describe what happens when we first receive Christ?