Featured Song: Praise the Lord, All the Earth (Psalm 104)

Today’s featured song is from Celtic Psalms (Volume 1): Praise the Lord, All the Earth (Psalm 104)




Click on the Youtube link and listen while you read…









Words: Kiran Young Wimberly, based on Psalm 104


Music: Thughamar Féin an Samhradh Linn (Traditional, arr. Pádraigín Ní Uallacháin and Kiran Young Wimberly)


History of Air: Thughamar Féin an Samhradh Linn is a traditional melody originating from the Armagh area of the Oriel region in Northern Ireland. The melody is one of the oldest song types in the Irish song tradition and was rediscovered in an archive by the wonderful traditional singer and scholar of traditional song, Pádraigín Ní Uallacháin (see her fascinating book A Hidden Ulster: People, song and traditions of Oriel). It was traditionally sung in May to mark the arrival of spring. I was inspired by her version of this song, which appears on her 2002 album An Dealg Óir.


Psalm 104: This psalm is known as one of the creation stories within scripture. It tells of God creating the foundations of the world, the elements of nature, and the creatures that dwell on the earth. In this psalm, the whole earth seems to be singing its praise to the Creator God. God creates this beautiful world that we can enjoy, and God also provides for all living creatures – springs for the animals to drink from, grass for the cattle to eat, trees in which the birds can build their nests. And for humans, God provides food from the soil, fruit from the vine “to gladden the human heart” (NRSV), bread to strengthen us, the sun and moon to mark the passage of days and seasons, and even the spirit of life within us. Through this psalm, we’re reminded of the majesty of creation – its intricacy and vastness – but also of our unique place within it. All that we have comes from God, right down to our very breath. And so, with the rest of creation, we sing this refrain: “Praise the Lord, all the earth.”


How to Use This Song: This is a wonderful gathering song. It can be used as a Call to Worship with a leader singing the first and third lines of each verse and the congregation singing the repeated second and fourth lines “Praise the Lord, all the earth” – or, the congregation can sing the entire song as a hymn. For instrumentation, we have vocal harmonies, guitar chords, instrumentation, and piano accompaniment in our GIA songbook. Even without a full band, I love having a stringed instrument weave throughout the song, whether a cello (on our CD) or a fiddle (as in the youtube recording above). On a Sunday focusing on this psalm, I have used the last few verses (see below) as a sung response of thanksgiving in place of the doxology.


All of these good things you have created
Praise the Lord, all the earth
You give us breath, new life to all
Praise the Lord, all the earth


Glory to God forever and ever
Praise the Lord, all the earth
I’ll sing to God all of my living
Praise the Lord, all the earth


Personal Note: Some of the most sacred moments in our concerts or worship services come as we sing the last verse, “Glory to God forever and ever,” a capella. There is something quite moving about the words combined with the soaring melody, especially when a congregation is singing in full voice. It’s an uplifting way to begin a time of worship.




Songbook Published by GIA here

CD Available here

Purchase Mp3 Bundle here

Lyrics on our website here


Hear us sing Praise the Lord, All the Earth in a Vespers service at the Calvin Worship Symposium, Jan 2017 (scroll to min 8:45)


How have you used this song? Or, if you haven’t tried it yet, how do you think you might incorporate it into a worship service? We would love to hear!