Birds in Hymns – Hear Me O God, Nor Hide Thy Face

Eastern Screech Owl (Megascops asio) (captive) by Raymond Barlow

Eastern Screech Owl (Megascops asio) (captive) by Raymond Barlow

A Prayer of the afflicted, when he is overwhelmed, and poureth out his complaint before the LORD. Hear my prayer, O LORD, and let my cry come unto thee. Hide not thy face from me in the day when I am in trouble; incline thine ear unto me: in the day when I call answer me speedily. (Psalms 102:1-2 KJV)

Words by Isaac Watts (1674-1748), The Psalms of Da­vid, 1719.

Music: St. Mat­thew, Will­iam Croft (1678-1727), 1708

Al­ter­nate tune: Kings­foldRalph Vaugh­an Will­iams, 1906

Hear Me O God, Nor Hide Thy Face


Hear me, O God, nor hide Thy face;
But answer, lest I die;
Hast Thou not built a throne of grace
To hear when sinners cry?

My days are wasted like the smoke
Dissolving in the air;
My strength is dried, my heart is broke,
And sinking in despair.

My spirits flag like withering grass
Burnt with excessive heat;
In secret groans my minutes pass,
And I forget to eat.

As on some lonely building’s top
The sparrow tells her moan,
Far from the tents of joy and hope
I sit and grieve alone.

My soul is like a wilderness
Where beasts of midnight howl;
There the sad raven finds her place
And there the screaming owl.

Dark, dismal thoughts, and boding fears,
Dwell in my troubled breast;
While sharp reproaches wound my ears,
Nor give my spirit rest.

My cup is mingled with my woes,
And tears are my repast;
My daily bread, like ashes, grows
Unpleasant to my taste.

Sense can afford no real joy
To souls that feel Thy frown;
Lord, ’twas Thy hand advanced me high
Thy hand hath cast me down.

My looks like withered leaves appear;
And life’s declining light
Grows faint as evening shadows are
That vanish into night.

But Thou for ever art the same,
O my eternal God;
Ages to come shall know Thy name,
And spread Thy works abroad.

Thou wilt arise and show Thy face,
Nor will my Lord delay
Beyond th’appointed hour of grace,
That long-expected day.

He hears His saints, He knows their cry,
And by mysterious ways
Redeems the prisoners doomed to die,
And fills their tongues with praise.

Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. (Hebrews 13:8 KJV)

Northern Raven (Corvus corax) by Ray

Northern Raven (Corvus corax) by Ray

Isaac Watts (1674-1748) – See He That Hath Made His Refuge God

Will­iam Croft (1678-1727)

As a boy, Croft was a chor­is­ter at the Cha­pel Roy­al. From 1700-1712, he was or­gan­ist at St. Anne, So­ho, Lon­don. From 1704 on, he was, joint­ly with Jer­e­m­i­ah Clarke, or­gan­ist of the Cha­pel Roy­al. In 1708 he be­came Mas­ter of the Child­ren at Cha­pel Roy­al and or­gan­ist at West­min­ster Ab­bey. In 1713 he re­ceived a Doc­tor of Mu­sic de­gree from Ox­ford Uni­ver­si­ty. In 1726, the Aca­de­my of Vo­cal Mu­sic (lat­er the Aca­de­my of An­cient Mu­sic) was found­ed by 13 mu­si­cians, in­cluding Croft, Pep­usch, Bo­non­ci­ni, and Gem­i­ni­a­ni.

Croft was com­pos­er to Queen Anne and was rec­og­nized as the fore­most church mu­si­cian of his time. Croft al­so wrote in­stru­ment­al works (e.g., cem­balo and so­na­tas for flute (re­cord­er).


More Birds in Hymns

See ~ Wordless Birds

Most information from The Cyber Hymnal  –  Hear Me O God, Nor Hide Thy Face


Birds In Hymns – With Songs and Honors Sounding Loud

Birds In Hymns – With Songs and Honors Sounding Loud – Isaac Watts

Praise the LORD! For it is good to sing praises to our God; For it is pleasant, and praise is beautiful. (Psalms 147:1 NKJV)

Words – By Isaac Watts, The Psalms of David, 1719
Music – By Bedford, William Wheale, 1729
Alternate Tune Belfield by William Gilchrist, 1895

With Songs and Honors Sounding Loud

With songs and honors sounding loud,
Address the Lord on high;
Over the heav’ns He spreads His cloud,
And waters veil the sky.

He sends His showers of blessing down
To cheer the plains below;
He makes the grass the mountains crown,
And corn in valleys grow.

Northern Raven (Corvus corax) by Ray

Northern Raven (Corvus corax) by Ray

He gives the grazing ox his meat,
He hears the raven’s cry;
But man, who tastes His finest wheat,
Should raise His honors high.

His steady counsels change the face
Of the declining year;
He bids the sun cut short his race,
And wintry days appear.

His hoary frost, His fleecy snow,
Descend and clothe the ground;
The liquid streams forbear to flow,
In icy fetters bound.

When from the dreadful stores on high
He pours the rattling hail,
The wretch that dares this God defy
Shall find his courage fail.

He sends His Word, and melts the snow,
The fields no longer mourn;
He calls the warmer gales to blow,
And bids the spring return.

The changing wind, the flying cloud,
Obey His mighty Word:
With songs and honors sounding loud,
Praise ye the sovereign Lord.


a Psalm of David. I will praise You, O LORD, with my whole heart; I will tell of all Your marvelous works. I will be glad and rejoice in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High. (Psalms 9:1-2 NKJV)

Be exalted, O LORD, in Your own strength! We will sing and praise Your power. (Psalms 21:13 NKJV)

Be exalted, O LORD, in Your own strength! We will sing and praise Your power. (Psalms 21:13 NKJV)

Most information from The Cyber Hymnal

See ~ Wordless Birds

More ~ Birds in Hymns


Birds of the Bible – Raven II

Northern Raven (Corvus corax) by Ray

Northern Raven (Corvus corax) by Ray

The first Birds of the Bible – Raven article covered many aspects of the Raven. It was written in February of 2008 when I first started writing about the Birds of the Bible. There is always more to learn about birds or the Lord for that matter. We never “arrive” in our learning.

Some verses about the Raven that are interesting have to do with the Lord or God providing for them.

Who provideth for the raven his food? when his young ones cry unto God, they wander for lack of meat. (Job 38:41 KJV)

He giveth to the beast his food, and to the young ravens which cry. (Psalms 147:9 KJV)

Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls? (Luke 12:24 KJV)

With all the providing by the LORD God for the Raven, He (LORD God) then uses the Ravens to feed Elijah during a drought. Elijah was told to go to the brook Cherith and there he would be fed. Notice that the ravens came twice a day and brought “bread and flesh.”

Get thee hence, and turn thee eastward, and hide thyself by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan. And it shall be, that thou shalt drink of the brook; and I have commanded the ravens to feed thee there. So he went and did according unto the word of the LORD: for he went and dwelt by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan. And the ravens brought him bread and flesh in the morning, and bread and flesh in the evening; and he drank of the brook. (1 Kings 17:3-6 KJV)

Australian Raven (Corvus coronoides) by Ian

Australian Raven (Corvus coronoides) by Ian

Here are some interesting remarks from commentators about this:
Wesley – 1Ki 17:4,6 “God is said to command both brute creatures, and senseless things; when he causeth them to do the things which he intends to effect by them. The ravens – Which he chuseth for this work; to shew his care and power in providing for the prophet by those creatures, which are noted for their greediness, that by this strange experiment he might be taught to trust God in those many and great difficulties to which he was to be exposed. God could have sent angels to minister to him. But he chose winged messengers of another kind to shew he can serve his own purposes as effectually, by the meanest creatures as by the mightiest. Ravens neglect their own young, and do not feed them: yet when God pleaseth, they shall feed his prophet.”
“And flesh – Not raw, but boiled by the ministry of some angel or man, and left in some place ’till the ravens came for it: in all which, there is nothing incredible, considering the power and providence of God.”

K&D – “Through this miracle, which unbelievers reject, because they do not acknowledge a living God, by whom, as the Creator and Lord of all creatures, even the voracious ravens are made subservient to His plans of salvation, Elijah was not only cut off from (interaction) with men, who might have betrayed his place of abode to the king, but was mightily strengthened himself, through the confidence inspired in the almighty assistance of his God, for his approaching contests with the worshippers of idols, and for the privations and sufferings which awaited him in the fulfilment of his vocation.”


Common Raven (Corvus corax) by Kent Nickell

Matthew Henry – “Elijah was commanded to hide himself. If Providence calls us to solitude and retirement, it becomes us to go: when we cannot be useful, we must be patient; and when we cannot work for God, we must sit still quietly for him. The ravens were appointed to bring him meat, and did so. Let those who have but from hand to mouth, learn to live upon Providence, and trust it for the bread of the day, in the day. God could have sent angels to minister to him; but he chose to show that he can serve his own purposes by the meanest creatures, as effectually as by the mightiest. Elijah seems to have continued thus above a year. The natural supply of water, which came by common providence, failed; but the miraculous supply of food, made sure to him by promise, failed not. If the heavens fail, the earth fails of course; such are all our creature-comforts: we lose them when we most need them, like brooks in summer. But there is a river which makes glad the city of God, that never runs dry, a well of water that springs up to eternal life. Lord, give us that living water!”

Gill – “…it seems better to interpret them of ravens, as we do, these creatures delighting to be in solitary places, in valleys, and by brooks; nor need it be any objection that they were unclean creatures by the law, since Elijah did not feed upon them, but was fed by them; and supposing any uncleanness by touch, the ceremonial law might be dispensed with in an extraordinary case, as it sometimes was; though it is very remarkable that such creatures should be employed in this way, which are birds of prey, seize on anything they can, live on carrion, and neglect their own young, and yet feed a prophet of the Lord; which shows the power and providence of God in it.”

Elijah and the ravens help illustrate the following verse:

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. (Matthew 6:33 KJV)

April Lorier’s Article about the Ravens

Northern Raven (Corvus corax) by Ray

Who is Worth More – Me or Ravens?
The price of everything – that’s gas, groceries, utilities and other essentials – is going up weekly. Sometimes I feel like asking, “Are You aware of this, God? What are You going to do about this situation?

It was during one of these pessimistic periods that I thought of ravens. [I cant explain it, so don’t ask.] I decided to run a concordance search on these less-than-beautiful birds and was surprised at all the references in both the Old and New Testaments……” To see the whole article – Click Here

To see more of April’s articles here – Click Here

Some of April’s more recent articles on her site worth reading (they are all worth reading)

See more of April’s articles.*

Birds of the Bible – More Value

Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Passer montanus) by Nikhil

Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Passer montanus) by Nikhil

We have mentioned the sparrow many times in the blog and about how God takes care of them, as in the following articles:

Birds of the Bible – God’s Care for BirdsSparrow IISparrow I and Eye of the Beholder – House Sparrows

This time, I would like point out the part about being of “more value.” In Matthew 10:29-33, the two sparrows are mentioned as being sold for a farthing, a very small amount. According to A. Barnes’ Notes, “The argument is, that if He takes care of birds of the least value, if He regards so small a thing as the hair of the head, and numbers it, He will certainly protect and provide for you. You need not, therefore, fear what man can do to you.”

Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows. Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.(Matthew 10:29-33 KJV)

Northern Raven (Corvus corax) by Ray

Northern Raven (Corvus corax) by Ray

Also: “Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear; you are more valuable than many sparrows.” (Luke 12:7 NASB);  “Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap, which have neither storehouse nor barn; and God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds?” (Luke 12:24 NKJV) and He said to them, “What man is there among you who has a sheep, and if it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will he not take hold of it and lift it out? “How much more valuable then is a man than a sheep! So then, it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.” (Matthew 12:11-12 NASB)

We see then that “man” has more value than sparrows, ravens, birds, and sheep just from these few verses. Yet, each of them are greatly valued by their creator. Where else are things of value mentioned in Scripture?

David had the opportunity to kill King Saul, but he valued the life of the king more.

May the LORD repay every man for his righteousness and his faithfulness; for the LORD delivered you into my hand today, but I would not stretch out my hand against the LORD’s anointed. And indeed, as your life was valued much this day in my eyes, so let my life be valued much in the eyes of the LORD, and let Him deliver me out of all tribulation.” (1 Samuel 26:23-24 NKJV)

Wisdom and understanding have great value and Job mentions it in Job 28.

But where can wisdom be found? And where is the place of understanding? “Man does not know its value, Nor is it found in the land of the living. (Job 28:12-13 NASB)

Where then does wisdom come from? And where is the place of understanding? “Thus it is hidden from the eyes of all living And concealed from the birds of the sky. (Job 28:20-21 NASB)

Zechariah in his prophecy of the future, tells about the price of Christ the Lord as 30 shekels (pieces) of silver.

Then the LORD said to me, “Throw it to the potter, that magnificent price at which I was valued by them.” So I took the thirty shekels of silver and threw them to the potter in the house of the LORD. (Zechariah 11:13 NASB)

We are of great value to the Lord, so much so, that He gave His Life for our salvation. If you know the Lord as Savior, then, that “knowing Christ Jesus,” has tremendous value.

More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, (Philippians 3:8 NASB)

We trust you do know the Lord and realize how much He loves you and cares for you. Much more than the critters, whom he cares for tremendously.

See also Gospel Message

Birds of the Bible – Foundation #4

We will continue on with the Birds of the Bible – Foundation series.

If you have not read the previous blogs:
Foundation #1,  –  Foundation #2 –  Foundation #3

The last article in this series left the world, Noah, his family, the animals, birds and creeping things in a rough situation. All the world was violently rearranged by the global flood and all air-breathing creation was dead, except for those on board the Ark.

Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water. (1 Peter 3:20)

But first must he (Christ-the Creator) suffer many things, and be rejected of this generation. And as it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man. They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all. (Luke 17:25-27)

Just as those who were saved by being in the Ark, so are we by putting our trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;” (1 Timothy 2:5)

Australian Raven by Les Thurbon

Australian Raven by Les Thurbon

Finally, (Noah and all were in the Ark for over a year.) Noah opened the window in the ark and sent forth a raven. The raven which flew back and forth to the ark until the land was dried up. Noah, then sent out the Dove (female) to see if the ground was off the ground. Doves are ground feeders and also like to put their nests on the ground many times. She found no resting place for her feet and so Noah put out his hand and brought

Eurasian-collared Dove in Israel

Eurasian-collared Dove in Israel

her back inside. Noah waited 7 more days and sent the dove out again and this time she came back with an olive leaf. This let Noah know that the waters were receding. When he released her again 7 more days later, the dove did not return. “The surface of the ground was dry.” (Genesis 8:7-12)

After 7 more days: “God spoke to Noah, saying,”

“Go out of the ark, you and your wife, and your sons and your sons’ wives with you. Bring out with you every living thing of all flesh that is with you: birds and cattle and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth, so that they may abound on the earth, and be fruitful and multiply on the earth.” So Noah went out, and his sons and his wife and his sons’ wives with him. Every animal, every creeping thing, every bird, and whatever creeps on the earth, according to their families, went out of the ark. Then Noah built an altar to the LORD, and took of every clean animal and of every clean bird, and offered burnt offerings on the altar. And the LORD smelled a soothing aroma. Then the LORD said in His heart, “I will never again curse the ground for man’s sake, although the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth; nor will I again destroy every living thing as I have done. “While the earth remains, Seedtime and harvest, Cold and heat, Winter and summer, And day and night Shall not cease.” (Genesis 8:16-22 NKJV)

That is a tremendous promise and in Genesis 9, God blesses Noah and his sons and then makes some statements:

  • Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth
  • Fear of you and the dread of you shall be on every beast, bird, all that move on the earth, all fish of the sea. Are given into your hand
  • Every moving thing that lives shall be food. (Man is no longer just a vegetarian)
  • You shall not eat flesh with its life, that is, its blood
  • Whoever sheds man’s blood, By man his blood shall be shed; For in the image of God He made man.
  • God makes a covenant with man and every living creature

Genesis 9:11-17 NKJV
(11)  Thus I establish My covenant with you: Never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood; never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.”
(12)  And God said: “This is the sign of the covenant which I make between Me and you, and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations:
(13)  I set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth.
(14)  It shall be, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the rainbow shall be seen in the cloud;
(15)  and I will remember My covenant which is between Me and you and every living creature of all flesh; the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh.
(16)  The rainbow shall be in the cloud, and I will look on it to remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.”
(17)  And God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant which I have established between Me and all flesh that is on the earth.”

Rainbow by Mike Bader

Rainbow by Mike Bader

What a tremendous promise! Even though man and critters are still cursed, God will never bring another global flood.

As for the birds and other critters, we find from God’s Word that there are changes for them. They now can become food for man and other critters, they now have a fear and dread of man who has dominion over them, they now become eaters of others. They are still to reproduce and spread out and fill the earth, they are promised never to be totally destroyed again by a global flood, etc. Somewhere between the Fall in the garden of Eden and this, the nature of birds and critters is drastically changed from what God originally created them to be. All because of SIN.

Continue to Birds of the Bible – Foundation #5

Some links to some informative articles about the flood:
Noah’s Flood covered the whole earth
Universality of the Genesis Flood
How Did Defense/Attack Structures Come About?

Birds of the Bible – Raven

According to Thayer’s Birding Software, the Common Raven in the U.S. is 24 inches long (from beak to tail), with about a four foot wingspan, has “entirely black plumage, a large, heavy bill, wedge-shaped tail, long shaggy feathers on chin and throat, larger than crows and has relatively short legs.” It resides more out west than here in the east, though they show up in some areas in the east. You might find them in the desert, forest, canyons, foothills, mountains, and other places. “They are “often seen along highways eating road kill.” They are in the same family as Crows, Jays and Magpies.

Two Ravens mentioned in Israel: are the Brown-necked Raven

Brown-necked Raven, Israel

Brown-necked Raven, Israel

Raven Master

Raven Master

and Common Raven.

Bible Facts about the Raven

They were on the ark and the first to leave. (Gen 8:7)

Noah opened the window of the ark and let a raven fly out, for the purpose of ascertaining the drying up of the waters. The raven went out and returned until the earth was dry, but without being taken back into the ark” (Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament)

Two thoughts I have. The raven was the first bird to see the new world after the flood and if the raven had re-entered the ark, he would have corrupted it, since he was “unclean.”

Ravens are considered an unclean bird. They eat mostly carrion. (Lev 11:13-15)

Ravens fed Elijah. (I Kings 17:4-6)

“Elijah was commanded to hide himself. If Providence calls us to solitude and retirement, it becomes us to go: when we cannot be useful, we must be patient; and when we cannot work for God, we must sit still quietly for him. The ravens were appointed to bring him meat, and did so. Let those who have but from hand to mouth, learn to live upon Providence, and trust it for the bread of the day, in the day. God could have sent angels to minister to him; but he chose to show that he can serve his own purposes by the meanest creatures, as effectually as by the mightiest.” (Matthew Henry’s Commentary)

“and these provisions were ready prepared, the bread made and baked, and the flesh boiled, broiled, or roasted;” (John Gill’s Exposition of the OT)

The hair was “black as a raven.” (Song of Solomon 5:11)

Who provides food for the raven, When its young ones cry to God, And wander about for lack of food?” (Job 38:41)

“Sing to the LORD with thanksgiving; Sing praises on the harp to our God, Who covers the heavens with clouds, Who prepares rain for the earth, Who makes grass to grow on the mountains. He gives to the beast its food, And to the young ravens that cry.” (Psa 147:7-9)

They are mentioned in Luke 12:24 as not sowing or reaping, nor gathering and that God feeds them.

“Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap, which have neither storehouse nor barn; and God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds?”

A hymn that mentions Ravens:

Sometimes a Light Surprises
It can bring with it nothing,
But He will bear us through;
Who gives the lilies clothing
Will clothe His people too:
Beneath the spreading heavens
No creature but is fed;
And He who feeds the ravens
Will give His children bread.

World List of Ravens:
Little Raven, Relict Raven, Forest Raven, Chihuahuan Raven, Brown-necked Raven, Common Raven, Fan-tailed Raven, White-necked Raven, Thick-billed Raven

Other interesting facts:

Ravens are considered one of the most intelligent birds.

They have a Raven Master. “It’s said that when the ravens leave the Tower, the Tower will crumble and the kingdom will crumble with it.” To see the article: Tower of London

A Raven Defending His Nest