In Sweet Communion, Lord, with You

  • For performance notes on this song, see page 1083-1084 of Psalms for All Seasons: A Complete Psalter for Worship.
  • The following article is from the Psalter Hymnal Handbook.

Text Information:

Scripture References:
st. 1 = Ps. 73:23
st. 2 = Ps. 73:24
st. 3 = Ps. 73:25
st. 4 = Ps. 73:26
st. 5 = Ps. 73:27-28

This text is a paraphrase of the final segment of a wisdom psalm, Psalm 73:23-28. The versification of the text (usually one biblical verse per stanza) is a revision of that found in the 1912 Psalter.

"In Sweet Communion" sets forth the joy of walking closely with God (st. 1 and 5), following his directives (st. 2), shunning earthly distractions (st. 3), and experiencing his comfort and power. The final stanza proclaims the wisdom theme of the psalm: "To live apart from God is death; 'tis good his face to seek."

Liturgical Use:
Worship that focuses on the teaching "the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom."

Tune Information:

William U. Butcher (U.S.A., nineteenth century) composed PRAYER in 1860. Except for the fact that he had some association with the Oliver Ditson Music Company, no information is available about Butcher.

This simple but serviceable tune has an elementary harmonization that invites singing in harmony. To emphasize the theme, sing the final stanza in unison both at the beginning and the end as a frame with an alternate organ setting. Sing all other stanzas in parts. Maintain one broad pulse per bar.

Other Resources:

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Song Audio: 
Psalm 73
Song Number: 
Projection and Reprint Information: 
  • Words and Music: The Words and Music are in the Public Domain; you do not need permission to project or reprint the Words and Music.
Public Domain