Hymn text by St. Francis of Assisi, ~1181-1226. View the full text of this hymn.

All creatures of our God and King
Lift up your voice and with us sing,
Alleluia! Alleluia!
Thou burning sun with golden beam,
Thou silver moon with softer gleam!
O praise Him! O praise Him!
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

At the death of Jesus Christ, scripture records great destruction. The rocks were rent, the earth shook, and the veil of the temple was torn apart. The account in the Book of Mormon is even more harrowing: for three hours, a storm of earthquakes, fire, lightning, and whirlwinds tore apart the land, causing such destruction that for three days no light could be seen, and no fire could be lit. Enoch saw in vision that Earth itself groaned at His death.

We often think of the earth as our mortal home, a place of rivers, oceans, mountains, lakes, fields, forests, rocks, and hills. It’s a place where things can grow, where life can flourish. And all of this is true, but the earth is more than that. Scripture teaches that the earth itself has a spirit, like do all of God’s creations. (Moses 7:48-49)

If the earth has a spirit and can groan at Christ’s death, then surely it can also rejoice at the restoration of the Gospel in the last days and the anticipated Second Coming of Jesus Christ! Surely there is nothing that would bring greater relief to the earth itself than the peace that comes of righteousness. And if the earth itself can rejoice over the coming of Christ, surely so too can the rest of his creations.

Dear mother earth, who day by day
Unfoldest blessings on our way,
O praise Him! Alleluia!
The flowers and fruits that in thee grow,
Let them His glory also show.
O praise Him! O praise Him!
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

The word “Alleluia” is a transliteration of the Hebrew word (הללו יה), which means “praise ye Jehovah”. In this hymn, not only do we praise the Lord personally, but we also invite all of God’s creations—animals, plants, wind, water, the earth itself, even the sun and the moon—we invite all of God’s creations to join with us in that praise. I can think of no other hymn that so fully acknowledges both the breadth of His creation and the loving relationship he has with it.

So when you sing this hymn, remember that we are not alone in praising God. We are part of a vast chorus, wide as the universe itself, praising God and rejoicing in his plan of Salvation and Exaltation.

One comment on “Hymn #62: All Creatures of Our God and King”

    BJ, Wow! Such a clear vision of all of creation praising God and Jesus Christ. You captured perfectly one of my favorite concepts from the Pearl of Great Price, that of the spirit of the earth groaning at the wickedness upon it, and then moving on to the glorious joy of the earth at the restoration of all things. Yet to come is the return of the Savior. In Noah’s time the earth was cleansed by water, thus also having a baptism to renew it. When Christ comes again, the earth will have the baptism by fire, of the Holy Ghost. How joyful that the earth (and all creation) also will be renewed and praise God! Alleluia!

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