The Oxyrhynchus Hymn

"In 1896, in a garbage dump in the ancient town of Oxyrhynchus near Cairo, two archeologists made an amazing discovery!

Preserved for thousands of years were fragments from nearly every book from the Hebrew and Christian Bible.

On the back of one of the papyri, written in Greek with both lyrics and music notations, is thought to be the oldest known Christian hymn—from around the 3rd Century AD—translated:

". . .let the luminous stars not shine, let the winds and all the noisy rivers die down. And as we hymn the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, Let all the powers add, 'Amen. Amen.' Empire, praise always, and glory to God, the sole giver of good things. 'Amen. Amen.' "

Engage with the Bible—in the many surprising layers of this Book of Books!"

Share

More Book Minute Features

October 21, 2019

National Reptile Awareness Day

What’s the best way to celebrate Reptile Awareness Day? Start with a definition. Reptiles are scaly, cold-blooded, vertebrates that include lizards,...
October 14, 2019

Eisenhower's Inaugural Verses

President Dwight Eisenhower was born on this day in 1890. Shortly before his first inauguration in 1953, the president-elect asked Billy Graham to sug...
October 07, 2019

Fanny Crosby: Prolific Blind Hymn Writer

Fanny Crosby, though blind from a very young age, became a prolific hymn writer. Fanny Crosby was 15 when she was enrolled at the newly founded New Y...