Hymn #588: Let Justice Flow like Streams

Jane Parker Huber (b. 1926) incorporated two verses from the Hebrew prophet Amos for this text: 5:24 and 7:8. She wanted to convey the idea of the necessity of “measuring up” to God’s standards, setting a goal to inspire a community’s progress in working toward God’s justice.

Jane Parker Huber was born on October 24, 1926, in Jinan, China, the daughter of Presbyterian missionary parents stationed there. She grew up on the campus of Hanover College, Indiana, as her father served as president of that institution from 1929 until 1958.

This anonymous melody is named ST. THOMAS. It was part of a longer hymn tune called HOLBORN in Aaron Williams’s The Universal Psalmist (1763) and appeared in the present version in Isaac Smith’s A Collection of Psalm Tunes (1770) as a setting for Psalm 48. However, the composer responsible for the arrangement is unknown.

Aaron Williams (1731-1776) published The Universal Psalmist in 1763 and added various editions in later years, including The New Universal Psalmist (1770). Williams was a music engraver and publisher and was also a teacher in the city of London, England, where he was born and died.