From the Album Getty Kids Hymnal – Hymns from Home
Christ the Lord is risen today, Alleluia!
Earth and heaven in chorus say, Alleluia!
Raise your joys and triumphs high, Alleluia!
Sing, ye heavens, and earth reply, Alleluia!
Love’s redeeming work is done, Alleluia!
Fought the fight, the battle won, Alleluia!
Death in vain forbids him rise, Alleluia!
Christ has opened paradise, Alleluia!
Lives again our glorious King, Alleluia!
Where, O death, is now thy sting? Alleluia!
Once he died our souls to save, Alleluia!
Where’s thy victory, boasting grave? Alleluia!
Soar we now where Christ has led, Alleluia!
Following our exalted Head, Alleluia!
Made like him, like him we rise, Alleluia!
Ours the cross, the grave, the skies, Alleluia!
Can you imagine being the 18th child in your family? Well, Charles Wesley, the man who wrote this famous Easter hymn, could say that he was! His birthday was also the 18th day of December. He was born in Epworth, England in 1707. When he was only nine years old, he went to boarding school at Westminster School. He later studied at Oxford University and became a college tutor.
“Christ the Lord is Risen Today” was originally called “Hymn for Easter Day”. It was first sung at a church service and then was printed in a book called “Hymns and Sacred Poems” by Charles and his brother John in 1739. He and his brother were a powerful writing team! They began the Methodist Church movement.
Wesley was inspired by an older hymn he knew called “Jesus Christ is Risen Today”. He wrote eleven verses, but over the years it became six. We are learning four this month! The melody we most often use was written by someone else (no one is quite sure who!) several years before in 1708. It is called “Easter Hymn”.
We can sing this hymn all year round. But we love to sing it best with our church family on Easter morning! We are learning it during the month of March this year to prepare ourselves for Easter Sunday in April.