Matthew Bridges, 1800-1894
Godfrey Thring, 1823-1903

His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.
And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called the Word of God.
Revelation 19:12 & 13

"Jesus Christ, the condescension of divinity and the exaltation of humanity."
~Phillips Brooks

The One Who bore the crown of thorns while on the cross will one day soon be crowned with "many crowns" as the reigning monarch of Heaven. Each crown in this hymn text exalts Jesus Christ for some specific aspect of His person or ministry: Stanza one for His eternal Kingship; stanza two for His love demonstrated in coming to live as the Son of Man; stanza three for His death on the cross; stanza four his victorious resurrection and current reign as a member of the Triune Godhead ever worthy of worship and praise.

This worshipful text is the combined effort of two distinguished Anglican clergymen, each of whom desired to write a hymn of exaltation to our suffering but now victorious Lord. Matthew Bridges' version first appeared in 1851 with six stanzas. Twenty-three years later Godfrey Thring wrote six additional stanzas, which appeared in his collection Hymns and Sacred Lyrics. The hymn's present form includes stanzas one, two, and four by Bridges and the third verse by Thring. The tune, "Diademata" (the Greek word for "crowns"), was composed especially for this text by George Elvey, a noted organist at St. George's Chapel in Windsor, England, where British royalty often attend.

Crown Him with many crowns,
the Lamb upon His throne.
Hark! How the heavenly anthem drowns
all music but its own.
Awake, my soul, and sing of Him
Who died for thee,
And hail Him as thy matchless King
through all eternity.

Crown Him the Son of God,
before the worlds began,
And ye who tread where He hath trod,
crown Him the Son of Man;
Who every grief hath known
that wrings the human breast,
And takes and bears them for His own,
that all in Him may rest.

Crown Him the Lord of love,
behold His hands and side,
Rich wounds, yet visible above,
in beauty glorified.
No angel in the sky
can fully bear that sight,
But downward bends his wond'ring eye
at mysteries so bright.

Crown Him the Lord of life,
who triumphed over the grave,
And rose victorious in the strife
for those He came to save.
His glories now we sing,
Who died, and rose on high,
Who died eternal life to bring
and lives that death may die.

*For Today*: Romans 14:9; Hebrews 2:7-10; Revelation 1:5 & 6, 5:11-14, 19:1

Let your soul rejoice in the truth that you are related to the One "Who died eternal life to bring and lives that death may die". Worship and praise the Lamb upon His throne even today!

Music url: The Cyber Hymnal

Taken from Amazing Grace -- 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions Copyright 1990 by Kenneth W. Osbeck. Published by Kregel Publications, Grand Rapids, MI. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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