Wesley’s words were written for the tune Fairest Isle, from Purcell’s semi-opera King Arthur, where the words are as follows:

“Fairest isle, all isles excelling,
Seat of pleasure and of love:
Venus here will quit her dwelling,
And forsake her Cyprian grove.
Cupid from his fav’rite nation
Care and envy will remove;
Jealousy, that poisons passion,
And despair that dies for love.”

Why should the devil have all the best tunes?

Love Divine, all love's excelling by Henry Purcell (1659-1695)


Forces Required
Soprano and Organ (or Piano)

Love divine, all loves excelling,
joy of heaven to earth come down,
fix in us thy humble dwelling,
all thy faithful mercies crown.
Jesu, thou art all compassion,
pure unbounded love thou art;
visit us with thy salvation,
enter every trembling heart.

Come almighty to deliver,
let us all thy life receive;
suddenly return and never,
never more thy temples leave.
Thee we would be always blessing,
serve thee as thy hosts above;
pray and praise thee without ceasing,
glory in thy perfect love.

Finish then thy new creation:
pure and sinless let us be;
let us see thy great salvation,
perfectly restor’d in thee;
chang’d from glory into glory,
till in heav’n we take our place,
till we cast our crowns before thee,
lost in wonder love and praise.

Words by Charles Wesley (1707 – 1788)