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The Lord Will Provide

[John Newton, 1779, from Olney Hymns, vol. 1, hymn 7]

Peter Bellamy sings lead on the rugged old hymn The Lord Will Provide in 1979 on his Topic LP Both Sides Then. He is joined on chorus by his wife Anthea, and by the Watersons. The words of this hymn were written by John Newton (author of Green Fields and Amazing Grace, among others). As Bellamy’s liner notes tell us, The Lord Will Provide was derived from a recording made during a Primitive Baptist service in either Kentucky (according to the LP liner notes) or Tennessee (CD liner notes) featuring Lenville Ball.

Jon Boden sang The Lord Will Provide as the 19 September 2010 entry of his project A Folk Song a Day.


Peter Bellamy sings The Lord Will Provide

Though troubles around us and dangers affright,
Though friends all should fail and foes all unite;
Yet there’s one thing secures us whatever betide,
The scripture assures us, the Lord will provide.

The birds without barn, without storehouse are fed,
From them let us learn to trust for our bread:
For the saints, e’er repeating, they won’t be denied,
As long as ’tis written, the Lord will provide.

His call we obey like Abraham of old,
Not knowing our way but faith makes us bold;
For though we are strangers, well, we have a good guide,
Have trust in all dangers, the Lord will provide.

When Satan appears to stop up our path,
He fills us with fears, but won’t lose our faith;
He cannot take from us though hard he has tried,
This heart-cheering promise, the Lord will provide.

He tells us so slyly our hope is in vain,
All the good that we seek, well, we ne’er shall obtain,
But when such suggestions our spirits have tried,
This answers all questions, the Lord will provide.


Transcribed by Reinhard Zierke. Thanks to Bob Hudson for the note on the song.