Hymn #251: I Greet You, Sure Redeemer

This anonymous French text, "Je te salue, mon certain Redempteur," appeared in the Strasbourg edition of Clement Marot's Psalms (1545).  In 1868 it was included in the sixth volume of John Calvin's Opera, which led some scholars to erroneously assume that Calvin was the original author.

 

Elizabeth Lee Smith (1817-1898) prepared her English translation of this hymn in the same meter as the original French text, and it appeared in Philip Schaff's Christ in Song (1870).  Smith's version was later adapted to the meter of the Genevan psalm tune TOULON.

TOULON is a shortened version of the tune that appeared with Psalm 124 in the 1441 Genevan Psalter.  That tune, OLD 124TH, was one of the most universally known in the sixteenth-century Reformed churches and appeared with eight psalms in the Ainsworth Psalter, which was brought to the American colonies by the Pilgrims.

The Genevan Psalter of 1551 provided metrical versions of the psalms in French for use by Reformed congregations that were greatly influenced by John Calvin.  Calvin did not approve of the singing of any hymn texts except those based on the 150 psalms of the Hebrew Scriptures.