by Charles Wesley
Charles Wesley composed this "Hymn for Easter Day" in eleven stanzas. First sung at the famous Foundry Meeting House, the text was published in Hymns and Sacred Poems (1739). The "alleluia" responses, reflecting ancient Jewish and Christian practice, were added by later editors to fit the tune. The text contains some of the most familiar Easter themes: all creatures rejoice in Christ's resurrection; the work of redemption is complete; death is vanquished; we have new life in Christ now; we praise the victorious Christ. The "alleluias," which remind us of the ancient Easter greeting, do more than interrupt the textual flow: they provide the framework for praising God with each line of text.