Hymns for the 3rd Sunday of Advent, Year B - Revised Common Lectionary (17 Dec 2023)

A selection of hymns and songs based on themes from the Revised Common Lectionary for the third Sunday of Advent, Year B.

Most are free-to-use (ie public domain or copyright-free) meaning the words can be copied and sung to at least one tune with no concerns about copyright or performance licensing. Many such hymns are old/traditional - but where possible a variety of styles / genres are included.

A small selection of hymns which are still copyright, but are a particularly good fit for the day's readings, are also included.


First: Isaiah 61: 1-4, 8-11 - The spirit of the Lord has been given to me, he has sent me to bring good news to the poor.

Psalm:  Lk 1 / Is 61 - My soul rejoices in my God / The almighty works marvels for me / He fills the starving with good things.

Second: I Thessalonians 5:16-24 - Be happy at al times, pray constantly ... never try to suppress the Spirit ... may the God of peace make you perfect and holy.

Gospel: John 1: 6-8, 19-28 - A man came sent by God. His name was John.  ... The priest and Levites questioned him, he quoted from Isaiah "A voice cries in the wilderness..." ... there stands among you the one who is coming after me, I am not fit to undo his sandal ..."


Rejoice in the joy of knowing that the Lord is coming.  Focus on John as the bringer of the news of Jesus coming.

Free-use artwork

See lectionary art for this Sunday for suggested pictures and art-works based on today's readings.

Free-use hymns

Amazing Grace – How Sweet the Sound
And Can it be that I Should Gain
Be Thou my Vision
Blessed Assurance
Break Thou the Bread of Life - Lathbury

Christ in You, the Hope of Glory - Wesley, trans from Gerhardt
Christ Whose Glory Fills the Skies - Wesley
Come Thou (O) Long Expected Jesus
Comfort, Comfort Ye my People - Winkworth, trans from Olearius
Every Time I Feel the Spirit - Unknown

Give Me the Faith Which Can Remove - Wesley
Glory to God And Praise and Love - Wesley
God be in my Head (the Sarum Prayer)
God Be with You Till We Meet Again - Rankin (1828-1904)
God is Love His Mercy Brightens - Bowring
God is Working His Purpose Out / As year succeeds
God, whose Almighty Word - Marriott

Hail to the Lord's Anointed
Hark a Herald Voice is Calling
Hark my Soul it is The Lord - Cowper
Hark the Glad Sound the Saviour Comes - Doddridge
Hark the Herald Angels Sing - Wesley / Whitefield / et al
Heralds of Christ who Bear the King’s Commands - Copenhaver
Here O my Lord I See Thee Face to Face - Bonar
Hills of the North Rejoice
Holy God we Praise Thy Name
Holy Holy Holy (early in the morning) - Heber

I’ll Praise my Maker While I’ve Breath - Wesley / Watts
I'm Goin' a Sing When the Spirit Says Sing - Unknown
Jesus Shall Reign Where’er the Sun - Watts
Jesus!the Name High Over All - Wesley
Joy to the World the Lord is Come - Watts

Love Divine all Loves Excelling
May the Mind of Christ my Saviour - Wilkinson
O Come O Come Emmanuel
O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing - Wesley
O God Our Help in Ages Past
O Lord Your Tenderness - Kendrick
O Thou Who Camest From Above - Wesley
O Zion Haste - Thomson
Of the Father's Love Begotten
On Jordan’s Stormy Banks I Stand - Stennett
On Jordan's Bank the Baptist's Cry
On This Day the First of Days - Baker

Praise my Soulthe King of Heaven
Prayer is the Soul’s Sincere Desire - Montgomery
Pray Without Ceasing Pray - Lillenas (1885-1959) - USA only
Rejoice Ye Pure in Heart - Plumbtree
Rejoice, Rejoice Believers - Findlater, trans from Laurenti

Santo Santo Santo - Unknown
Saviour of the Nations, Come - Reynolds
Soldiers Of Christ Arise - Wesley
Soul Adorn Yourself With Gladness - Winkworth, trans from Franck
Spirit Divine Attend Our Prayers - Reed
Strengthen For Service Lord The Hands - Humphreys, Dearmer - trans from St. Ephraem, Syrus

Take Time to be Holy
Tell Me the Stories of Jesus - Parker
The Advent of our God - Chandler
The Day Thou Gavest Lord is Ended
The Lord our Righteousness - Wesley, trans from Nicolaus Ludwig, Graf von Zinzendorf
The Work of Faith (Author of faith, eternal Word) - Wesley
This Little Light of Mine - Unknown
To God be the Glory

Wake Awake for Night is Flying (Zion Hearsthe Watchmen / Sleeper’s Awake)
Watchman Tell Us of the Night - Bowring
What a Friend we have in Jesus
Ye Servants of the Lord - Doddridge

Hymns that may be still copyright

Amazing Grace (My Chains are Gone) - Newton + Tomlin and Giglio
Beauty for Brokenness (God of the poor) - Kendrick
Christ is the World's Light He and None Other - Pratt Green
Christ is the World's True Light - Briggs (1875-1959)
Days of Elijah - Mark
Down by the Jordan - Gillette (ref)

Go Forth for God (Go forth for God, go to the world in peace) - Peacey (1896-1971)
Go Tell Everyone (God's Spirit is in my Heart) - Dale / Richards - Dale / Richards
God Hath Spoken by His Prophets - Briggs
Have you Heard the Good News - Stuart Garrard (b 1963)
Holy Holy - Owens

Jesus Stand Among Us - Kendrick
Make Way, Make Way - Kendrick
Mary Sang a Song - Perry
Morning Glory Starlit Sky - Vanstone
My Soul Rejoices in God My Saviour - Alstott

O Bless the God of Israel - Perry
O World of God - Scott (1965)
People Look East (Carol of the Advent) - Farjeon (1881-1965)
Prepare ye the Way of the Lord / I Hear a Sound Coming from the Mountain

Tell Out my Soul
The Moon with Borrowed Light - Troeger
The Prophets’ Voice Comes Down the Years - Hinton
The Spirit Sends us Forth to Serve - Dufner
The Voice of God Goes out to all the World - Connaughton / Inwood
There’s a Voice in the Wilderness - Milligan (1876-1961)

Wild and Lone the Prophet's Voice - Daw
With Mary let my Soul Rejoice - Mowbray (b. 1938)
Word of Justice - Farrell
Wounded World That Cries For Healing - Murray
You Give Rest to the Weary - Fellingham / Busbee / Fellingham

See also ...

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