Unto the Hills (Psalm 121)

“Unto the Hills” is a metrical paraphrase of Psalm 121 by John D. Campbell, who was a British nobleman and the fourth Governor General of Canada from 1878 to 1883.

Matthew Henry (1662-1714) says in his commentary on the Bible, “Some call this [Psalm 121] the soldier’s psalm, and think it was penned in the camp, when David was hazarding his life in the high places of the field, and thus trusted God to cover his head in the day of battle. Others call it the traveller’s psalm (for there is nothing in it of military dangers) and think David penned it when he was going abroad, and designed it pro vehiculo — for the carriage, for a good man’s convoy and companion in a journey or voyage.”

Charles Spurgeon (1834-1892) likewise says of Psalm 121, “From the constant recurrence of the word ‘keep,’ we are led to name this song ‘a Psalm to the keeper of Israel.’ Were it not placed among the Pilgrim Psalms we should regard it as a martial hymn, fitted for the evensong of one who slept upon the tented field. It is a soldier’s song as well as a traveller’s hymn. There is an ascent in the psalm itself which rises to the greatest elevation of restful confidence.”

This gentle, pastoral setting for SATB voices and piano features mostly unison voices and two-part harmony, with 3- and 4-part harmony in the final verse.

SAB/piano score (8 pages, 8.5×11″) — $2.00 USD/copy

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