Category Archives: Hymn

Cherished Hymns for Guitar

Announcing a new album: a collection of favorite hymns for classical guitar.

Cherished Hymns for Guitar

The great hymns of the faith are a treasure for the church.  They unite our voices in worship today to the voices of saints of old.  Early in the 1980s I began transcribing hymns for classical guitar. I played them for my own enjoyment and for preludes at church. When I began serving my first church leading music in worship, I used the transcriptions to accompany our singing. Since that time I have transcribed hundreds of hymn tunes. This album includes some of my favorite and cherished hymns.

Click here to download free sheet music (PDF) of these hymns arranged for classical guitar.

Click here for more hymns arranged for classical guitar; and here for additional music for classical guitar, including music by Bach, Christmas music, Wedding music, and student pieces.

And Can It Be?

Amazing Love

And can it be that I should gain
An int’rest in the Savior’s blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain?
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! How can it be
That Thou my God shouldst die for me?

‘Tis mystery all, the Immortal dies:
Who can explore this strange design?
In vain the first born seraph tries
To sound the depths of love divine.
‘Tis mercy all! Let earth adore,
Let angel minds inquire no more.

He left His Father’s throne above.
So free, so infinite His grace;
Emptied Himself of all but love,
And bled for Adam’s helpless race.
‘Tis mercy all! Immense and free!
For O my God it found out me.

Long my imprisoned spirit lay
Fast bound in sin and nature’s night;
Thine eye diffused a quick’ning ray,
I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;
My chains fell off, my heart was free;
I rose, went forth and followed Thee.

No condemnation now I dread;
Jesus and all in Him is mine!
Alive in Him, my living Head,
And clothed in righteousness divine,
Bold I approach the eternal throne,
And claim the crown through Christ my own.

Words by Charles Wesley (1707–1788)

Download a transcription of this hymn for classical guitar (PDF sheet music) to the tune SAGINA.

More hymn tunes for classical guitar
More music for classical guitar

Hymn Tunes for Guitar

Guitar and Mountains

If you enjoy hymns and playing classical guitar, check out the growing online collection of free PDF downloads: Hymns for Classical Guitar. Several hymns have just been added:

O God Our Help in Ages Past  (ST ANNE)
Amazing Grace How Sweet the Sound  (NEW BRITAIN)
I Am Thine O Lord  (I AM THINE)
Sweet Hour of Prayer  (SWEET HOUR)
Abide with Me  (EVENTIDE)
Hallelujah Praise Jehovah  (RIPLEY)
Holy, Holy, Holy  (NICAEA)

You are welcome to copy and share these hymns with friends and fellow guitar enthusiasts. Please copy the full page with the website address and the “Used by Permission” notice at the bottom (see Permissions).

Find more music for classical guitar.

Sufficient Is the Word of God

Bible Sketch

Sufficient is the Word of God
That we may know His will,
And trust each day His providence
By faith content and still.
The secret things belong to God;
Our lives are His to lead.
But He has given us His Word
And that is all we need.

How vain the questions in my heart
To know what lies ahead,
When I neglect to read His Word
And know not what He said.
I need not look beyond His Word
To know His will for me;
If I but walk within its light
My path I’ll plainly see.

Our God has purposed and designed
Each moment of each day,
And though we rise and make our plans
‘Tis He directs our way.
Thus we should say when we arise:
“Lord-willing I shall stand.”
For we, except His Word reveals,
Know not what He has planned.

For who can search the mind of God,
Know what tomorrow brings?
And who can grasp His providence
To understand all things?
Our future rests within God’s hands
And we must leave it there;
Content to walk each day by faith
Within His loving care.

Tomorrow need not cause us fear,
For God knows what will be.
Sufficient that we know His Word
To walk obediently.
Where He has spoken, Let us hear,
Upon His Word we stand.
Where He is silent, Let us rest,
And trust His kind, good hand.

Words ©2000 Kenneth A Puls

This hymn is a reminder that God’s Word is sufficient for us to know His will for us. We “do not know what the future will bring” and so we must learn to say “if the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that” (James 4:13–17). “The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law” (Deuteronomy 29:29). We do not know what the future holds, but we can trust God in His providence and walk in obedience to His Word.

I wrote the hymn during a time of uncertainty. I had graduated from seminary, but was still searching for full time employment in teaching or ministry. I needed to preach truth to myself and rest in God’s providence. In an interesting turn of providence, in the same month I wrote the hymn (July 2000), I also began training to develop online courses and teach as an online instructor at Dallas Baptist University. I later used the knowledge from that training to develop the Founders Study Center when God gave me a full time job with Founders Ministries in 2003. God is good in all He provides.

Download the lyrics and  free sheet music (PDF) for this hymn, including chord charts for acoustic guitar, an arrangement of the tune for Classical Guitar, and an arrangement of the tune for Instrumental Ensemble.

—Ken Puls

Now May the God of Peace

“Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thessalonians 5:23, ESV).

A Prayer of sanctification that God would deepen our repentance and strengthen our faith in the daily battle against remaining sin.

Lord, I desire Your will
My heart yearns to obey
Though daily I am faced with sin
Enticing me away

So, help me rise each day
Battle and war with sin
Until I see You face to face
And final vict’ry win

Lord, You have so designed
Sin to remain in me
That as I struggle, watch and pray
I learn humility

So, help me to obey
Holiness to pursue
Deepen repentance when I fail
Strengthen my faith in You

I rest within the hope
Your Spirit dwells in me
Completing that which was begun
So holy I may be

Now may the God of Peace
Sanctify me wholly
And keep me blameless ’til the day
Christ comes in victory

Words ©1992, 2015 Kenneth A Puls

Read more about how this hymn came to be written and download free sheet music (PDF), including chord charts for acoustic guitar, an arrangement of the tune for Classical Guitar, and an arrangement of the tune for Instrumental Ensemble.

—Ken Puls

Gathered Now We Come to Worship

Gathered now, we come to worship,
Hearts united, singing praise!
We would look to Jesus only,
Letting none distract our gaze.
May we offer music fitting
For the worship of our King.
Let us foremost seek His pleasure
As our voices join to sing.

Worship is not about our efforts, our pursuits, or our offerings. Worship centers on the glory and majesty of Christ Jesus. This hymn is a meditation on 2 Corinthians 4:5 “For we do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your bondservants for Jesus’ sake.”

Check out the lyric video on youtube:

And download the music from band camp:

Click here to download lyrics and free sheet music: including song sheet, chord chart and music arranged for classical guitar.

—Ken Puls

 

I Love Thy Kingdom Lord

Cross and Steeple

One of the great hymns of the faith that has stood the test of time is Timothy Dwight’s “I Love Thy Kingdom, Lord.” Dwight lived from 1752 to 1817 and was the grandson of Jonathan Edwards. He was a young man in his twenties during the American Revolution. Licensed to preach in 1777, he served until the fall of 1778 as a chaplain in the Connecticut Brigade of the Continental Army. Later he became pastor of a Congregational church in Fairfield, Connecticut and from 1795 to 1817 served as the 8th President of Yale College.

While serving at Yale, Dwight revised and reprinted Psalms of David (1719) by Isaac Watts, and included several of his own hymns that paraphrased the Psalms. “I Love Thy Kingdom Lord” first appeared in print in the 1801 edition of Dwight’s revision. It is the earliest known hymn by an American writer still in common use.

Dwight’s original title to hymn was “Love to the Church.” In the lyrics he celebrates our allegiance to the Kingdom of God and our love for Christ and His church. The hymn is based in part on two verses from Psalm 137:

If I forget you, O Jerusalem,
let my right hand forget its skill!
Let my tongue stick to the roof of my mouth,
if I do not remember you,
if I do not set Jerusalem
above my highest joy
(Psalm 137:5–6)

If you know the hymn, the connection with the psalm may not be immediately evident. Most hymnals include only four verses; Dwight originally composed eight. Unfortunately, the verses most often left out include the ones that tie the hymn to the psalm. Here are the original eight verses to the hymn:

I Love Thy Kingdom Lord

I love Thy kingdom, Lord,
The house of Thine abode,
The church our blessed Redeemer saved
With His own precious blood.

I love Thy church, O God.
Her walls before Thee stand,
Dear as the apple of Thine eye,
And graven on Thy hand.

If e’er to bless Thy sons
My voice or hands deny,
These hands let useful skills forsake,
This voice in silence die.

Should I with scoffers join
Her altars to abuse?
No! Better far my tongue were dumb,
My hand its skill should lose.

For her my tears shall fall
For her my prayers ascend,
To her my cares and toils be given
Till toils and cares shall end.

Beyond my highest joy
I prize her heavenly ways,
Her sweet communion, solemn vows,
Her hymns of love and praise.

Jesus, Thou Friend divine,
Our Savior and our King,
Thy hand from every snare and foe
Shall great deliverance bring.

Sure as Thy truth shall last,
To Zion shall be given
The brightest glories earth can yield
And brighter bliss of Heaven.

Timothy Dwight, 1801

Download a PDF of the hymn “I Love Thy Kingdom Lord” to the tune ST THOMAS with all 8 verses.

Download a setting of the tune ST THOMAS for Classical Guitar

O Sovereign God, How Great Your Grace

Hymn1

Thirty years ago I made my first endeavor writing a hymn. It  was prompted by two significant events that God brought into my life in 1985. During that year I began serving God in the music ministry, and as a result, was introduced to the Doctrines of Grace.

On February 10, 1985 I was called as Music Minister at Raven Oaks Baptist Church in Omaha, Nebraska (the name of the church was later changed to Sovereign Grace Baptist Church). During the morning worship service on that day, Pastor Bill Lollar preached from Ephesians 2:8–9 as part of a series of messages on “The Greatest Verses in the Bible.” Bill’s preaching, along with a Wednesday night study through the 1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith that spring, challenged and deepened my understanding of God’s Word. Bill also encouraged me to read Loraine Boettner’s book The Reformed Doctrine of Predestination. After reading Boettner’s book in May and June, I wrote the hymn and shared it with the church on June 23, 1985. It was a celebration of the truths I was learning and a milestone that would set the course of my ministry.

Hymns for Classical Guitar

If you are a guitarist looking for music to play this Easter weekend, here are some suggestions. These hymn transcriptions are free downloads (PDF). They can be used for accompanying congregational singing, playing prelude or offertory music, or simply playing for your own enjoyment. Click on the hymn title to view or download the free sheet music.

Hymns for Good Friday

Alas! And Did My Savior Bleed
O Sacred Head Now Wounded
There Is a Fountain Filled with Blood
When I Survey the Wondrous Cross

Hymns for Easter

Crown Him With Many Crowns
Christ the Lord Is Risen Today (EASTER HYMN)
Look Ye Saints, the Sight Is Glorious
Thine Is the Glory

You are welcome to copy and share these hymns with friends and fellow guitar enthusiasts. Please copy the full page with the website address and the “Used by Permission” notice at the bottom (see Permissions).

For additional music, check out:

Hymns for Classical Guitar
Christmas Music for Classical Guitar
More Music for Classical Guitar

Guitar and Clouds

Come You Thirsty, Come to Christ

The Featured Song for August is a hymn based on Jeremiah 2:13 and Psalm 36. There is nothing more satisfying in life than coming to God, the “Fountain of Living Waters.” All other pursuits will prove empty and dry in comparison.

Check out the lyric video on youtube:

And download the music from bandcamp:

Click here to download lyrics and free sheet music: including song sheet, chord chart and music arranged for classical guitar.

—Ken Puls