Te Deum – Part 1

Te Deum – Part 1

Te Deum – Part 1.

You are God: we praise you;

You are the Lord: we acclaim you;

You are the eternal Father:

All creation worships you.


You. You. You. This ancient hymn of the Church begins with a heavenly outburst of adoration, unabashedly looking at God straight in the eye in faith, face to face, and declaring His praiseworthy divinity. This joyful confession humbly and ecstatically acknowledges that ultimate reverence is due to our Lord and eternal Father. A mere reference to God in the third person simply wouldn’t do. A bare doctrinal statement about God without speaking directly to God would be painfully insufficient. These opening words are strictly person-to-person, expressed with bold confidence and deep faith. Notice too that this historic praise song is in the plural, “we” not “I”. These words are meant to be sung with others, in church, with all the saints together joining in. Even when uttered in one’s solitary prayer closet, these words are mindful of a cloud of witnesses singing along, making the prayer closet crowded indeed.

All creation worships you. It doesn’t take that much imagination to accept the fact that nature has worship languages all its own. Creation sings songs of praise unknown to us humans until all of creation is redeemed and will speak the same heavenly language of love and praise. One big happy family at last. “Ask the animals and they will teach you, or the birds of the air, and they will tell you; or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish of the sea inform you. Which of all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this? In His hand is the life of every creature.” (Job 12: 7-10). God has given breath to every creature, who then is instinctively wired to worship the creator through its very existence. A tree applauds the Lord of creation by virtue of its God-given treeness. An orchid worships God through its delicate beauty. Stars and galaxies glorify God in an unknown language through their sheer presence in the heavens. (Ps. 19:1). Nature somehow knows its Source of life and nods its head in acknowledgment of His handiwork. The mountains and the hills all point to God, and the time will come when they will burst forth into songs that we all will enjoy. (Is. 55:12). The trees of the fields may wave their praise now in response to the God-given wind, but it won’t be long before they will clap their hands in jubilation. (Is. 55:12). Right now the valleys are warming up so they can shout in joyous song (Ps. 65:13), and the flowing rivers are stretching their hands in waves so they can applaud the Creator with the rest of nature. (Ps. 98:8). All of creation right this minute is dancing to the beat of a universal praise song, right down to the electrons in every cell of every aspect of creation. If all of creation can somehow groan for redemption (Ro. 8:22), then the whole creation can likewise dance in worship to the Lord.

All of creation is invited to worship God in the ecstatic Song of the Three Young Men in Daniel 3:52-90 (New Jerusalem Bible, apocryphal). These words of high praise are traditionally considered the content of the songs that the three young men sang while in Nebuchadnezzars’s furnace, when they were protected by the presence of pre-incarnate Jesus. The following words form one stanza of their Song of Creation:

“Glorify the Lord, all you works of the Lord, praise Him and highly exalt Him forever.

In the firmament of His power, glorify the Lord, praise Him and highly exalt Him forever. 

Let the earth glorify the Lord, praise Him and highly exalt Him for ever.

Glorify the Lord, O mountains and hills, and all that grows upon the earth,

Praise Him and highly exalt Him for ever.

Glorify the Lord, O springs of water, seas, and streams, O whales and all that move in the waters,

All birds of the air, glorify the Lord, praise Him and highly exalt Him for ever.

Glorify the Lord, O beasts of the wild, and you flocks and herds,

O men and women everywhere, glorify the Lord, praise Him and highly exalt Him for ever.”

Tedeum laudamus – Hephzibah Night of Hymns 2016 ft Nii Okai – YouTube