Hymn Bark is a series designed to purify our good hymns from errors, and purge some bad ones. Here is chapter 2:
Not really much wrong with this hymn, though I wish musicians would teach the congregation how to sing it. Routinely the note at the end of line 3 is changed, which hurts the musical diversity and melodic intensity of the hymn.
The only problem is “all the saints adore Thee, casting down their golden crowns around the glassy sea.” This is based on a misinterpretation of Revelation 4-5. The Elders in that passage are not saints, for Jesus has not ascended and there are no saints in heaven. They are angels, specifically the 24 Archangels that correspond in heaven to the 24 courses of Temple priests and the 24 courses of Temple musicians. We could change to “angels all adore Thee,” but I recommend just sticking with Biblical language and changing to “elders all adore Thee.”
So, get out those pencils.