O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing

Words by Charles Wesley Music by Oliver Holden

"O for a thousand tongues to sing
My great Redeemer's praise.”

When Charles Wesley consulted Peter Bohler as to the propriety of praising God, he replied, ”Had I a thousand tongues, I would praise him with all"—an expression that is believed to have inspired the opening line of this hymn which Wesley wrote, in 1739, to commemorate the first anniversary of his new birthday, the day of his conversion. When John Wesley made his collection of hymns for the use of the Methodists, he selected this one to stand as the first hymn in the book. To this day it remains in that place of honor, and as the Rev. S. W. Duffield says, it ”well deserves the prominence."