The Story Behind Love Divine, All Loves Excelling
According to Hymnary.org, Love Divine is considered “among Wesley’s finest”. The hymn first appeared in Wesley’s Hymns for those that Seek, and those that Have Redemption published in 1747.
Pictured below: Charles Wesley
Wesley is considered to have been influenced by a distinctly pagan popular song of the day, 'Fairest isle, all isles excelling', written by John Dryden for Act 2 of Henry Purcell's opera King Arthur (1691).
The hymn is written around a progression of thoughts: (1) our prayers for the Holy Spirit, (2) praying for the return of our Lord through the second coming, and (3) prayers for the finalization of his new creation.
Popular Hymn Lyrics with Story and Meaning
Day by Day and With Each Passing Moment
Jesus Loves Me
What a Friend We Have in Jesus
Nearer My God to Thee
Abide with Me
His Eye is On the Sparrow
Be Thou My Vision
Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God Almighty