Because You Might Find It Interesting. This comes from my You Version Reading Plan this morning.
ANGELS FROM THE REALMS OF GLORY
Next to Isaac Watts and Charles Wesley, James Montgomery is the most influential hymn writer in the English language. He wrote over 400 hymns, among which is Angels from the Realms of Glory. Montgomery was not a clergyman or musician; rather, he was a newspaper editor! Born in 1771 to Moravian missionaries, Montgomery attended seminary in England. While there, he was notified that his parents had died suddenly on the mission field in the West Indies. Despondent, Montgomery dropped out of school, never returning to seminary. Eventually, he went into the newspaper business–becoming editor of a weekly London paper where he remained for 31 years.
Because Montgomery strongly promoted the abolition of slavery and the rights of the poor, he was considered quite controversial. Twice, he was imprisoned for publishing his views! While in prison, he wrote a number of poems. In 1797, after his release, he published the poems in a book called “Prison Amusements.” His carol, Angels from the Realms of Glory, was first published as an editorial in his newspaper on Christmas Eve, 1816. The tune for this carol was composed by Henry Smart, one of the greatest church organists and composers of his generation. The melody for Angels from the Realms of Glory was composed for a new hymnal being published by Regent Square Presbyterian Church in London. The last two verses of this beautiful song describe the work of the Messiah when He comes to His temple. This vivid word picture comes from two Old Testament prophets–Haggai and Malachi.
Montgomery left the paper in 1825 and devoted the rest of his life promoting missions and other worthwhile causes. From 1833 until his death in 1854, the British government gave him a pension of $1,000 a year because of all his contributions to English society. Henry was blind for many years but continued to turn out many wonderful songs.
If you are of a mind, a prayer would not be wasted on me. A summer cold came on yesterday and is kicking me around fairly well – first one in a very long time. Thank you Dear Friends.
Be Hidden in CHRIST,