Tuesday Hymns: “’Tis by Thy Strength the Mountains Stand”

Our affirmations of faith over the last few weeks at Reformed Presbyterian Church in Beaumont, Texas, have come from the Westminster Shorter Catechism. Last Sunday, we read Question #8: “How does God execute His decrees?” The answer: “God executes His decrees in the works of creation and providence.” Our God not only created this beautiful world in which we live (beautiful even in its fallen state), but He is also the One that sustains it. As it says about Christ in Colossians 1:15-18:

“15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones dominions or rulers or authorities- all things were created through him and for him. 17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.”

Our Tuesday Hymn for this week is one of Isaac Watt’s lesser known hymns, “’Tis by Thy Strength the Mountains Stand.” It speaks of God’s sovereign control over all things. He is not a God who created the world then stepped back and shouted, “Good luck!” He is in control of every raindrop, breeze, temperature drop and rise, and, yes, even the hurricanes that we follow so closely here in Texas every summer are in His hands. He truly is God over all the earth! This hymn is usually sung to the tune, LAFAYETTE.

‘Tis by thy strength the mountains stand,
God of eternal power;
The sea grows calm at thy command,
And tempests cease to roar.

Thy morning light and ev’ning shade
Successive comforts bring;
Thy plenteous fruits make harvest glad,
Thy flowers adorn the spring.

Seasons and times, and moons and hours,
Heav’n, earth, and air, are thine;
When clouds distil in fruitful showers,
The Author is divine.

Those wand’ring cisterns in the sky,
Borne by the winds around
With wat’ry treasures well supply
The furrows of the ground.

The thirsty ridges drink their fill,
And ranks of corn appear;
Thy ways abound with blessings still,
Thy goodness crowns the year.

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