by Thomas Ken (1637-1711) 


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Delightful Duty

In the late 1600s, Thomas Ken, a prominent Anglican minister, royal chaplain, and bishop, composed three hymns for students at Winchester College, part of Oxford University.

These hymns were intended to be sung by the students during different moments of the day: upon waking in the morning, before bedtime in the evening, and at midnight if they had trouble sleeping.

Each hymn served as a declaration of faith and as a prayer for God’s blessings, tailored to the specific time it was to be recited.

The last stanza of each hymn was the same and praised the triune God. It became known as “The Doxology” and has endured over the years and remains well-known among Christians worldwide.

The primary tune associated with the Doxology is known as "Old One-Hundredth” and you may recognize it from June’s hymn, “All People That on Earth Do Dwell.”

Thomas Ken is known not only for his hymns and many poems, but also for taking bold stands politically both against King James II and William and Mary when he felt the Word of God was being compromised.

As you sing this hymn, remember . . . 

Our Praise Should Be:

Complete (stanza 1).

Intentional (stanza 2).

Pure (stanza 3).

Empowered (stanza 4).

Read & Relate

Note: I've placed the doxology as the first stanza to keep our focus there. The following stanzas are from Thomas Ken's Morning Hymn (see story above).

The Doxology (Morning Hymn)

by Thomas Ken, 1637-1711


Praise God, from whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him all creatures here below;
Praise Him above, ye heav'enly host;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

James 1:17; Ps. 150:6; Ps. 148:2; 2 Cor. 13:14

Awake, my soul, and with the sun
Thy daily stage of duty run;
Shake off dull sloth, and early rise
To pay thy morning sacrifice.

Ps. 5:3; Rom. 12:1; Col. 3:23-24; Ps. 59:16

Lord, I my vows to Thee renew.
Disperse my sins as morning dew;
Guard my first springs of thought and will;
And with Thyself my spirit fill.

Ps. 51:10; Ps. 50:14; 1 John 1:9; Phil. 4:7; Eph. 5:18

Direct, control, suggest, this day,
All I design or do or say,
That all my pow'rs, with all their might,
In Thy sole glory may unite.

John 16:13; Col. 3:17; Col. 1:11; Eph. 6:10




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The Study Guide

Our latest Hymn Study Guide will help you and your family reflect through each stanza of our hymn and connect it more firmly in biblical truth.

For Adults

Reflection Word Search Puzzle
Word Search Puzzle Key
Adult Coloring Pages


Print, mail or post this printable postcard on your fridge or bulletin board, clip in a photo holder or place in a frame.

For Kids 

Stanza Studies for Older Children
Stanza Studies for Younger Children
Activity Pages for Older Children
Activity Pages for Younger Children