I wasn’t expecting to find controversy when I looked up this song. 🙂 I grew up with this song and never thought a whole lot about it other than I liked singing it. I’ve since learned that there are two songs that are very similar “Fairest Lord Jesus” and “Beautiful Saviour”.
Fairest Lord Jesus, seems to have been written by German Jesuits in the 17th century. Yet there are others who date it back to the 1200’s sung by German crusaders. Which is accurate I don’t know. The only real point of agreement is that the words were translated by Joseph Seiss.
Fairest Lord Jesus, ruler of all nature,
O Thou of God and man the Son,
Thee will I cherish, Thee will I honor,
Thou, my soul’s glory, joy and crown.
Fair are the meadows, fairer still the woodlands,
Robed in the blooming garb of spring;
Jesus is fairer, Jesus is purer,
Who makes the woeful heart to sing.
Fair is the sunshine,
Fairer still the moonlight,
And all the twinkling starry host;
Jesus shines brighter, Jesus shines purer
Than all the angels Heav’n can boast.
All fairest beauty, heavenly and earthly,
Wondrously, Jesus, is found in Thee;
None can be nearer, fairer or dearer,
Than Thou, my Savior, art to me.
Beautiful Savior! Lord of all the nations!
Son of God and Son of Man!
Glory and honor, praise, adoration,
Now and forever more be Thine.