An opening hymn should be long enough for the spirit of the saints to be fanned into flame. If a hymn is not long enough, the saints will not be sufficiently "pumped up" in their spirit; they will be like those who are out of breath when they run home from the street and go directly to the dining table. In order for the opening hymn to stir up and uplift the spirit of the saints, the tune must be powerful, and it must be easy to sing; moreover, the lyrics should be of adequate length. For instance, Hymns, #213 is a good hymn for beginning the table meeting. If all the brothers and sisters sense that the Lord is full of glory and honor, then they can sing Hymns, #127, and continue with Hymns, #183. To do this, however, we must have some spiritual skill, and the spirit of the meeting must also be able to keep pace. Otherwise, as a rule, after singing Hymns, #127, we will not be able to find another hymn as a continuation because the singing has already reached the peak. For this reason we might need to reserve Hymns, #127 for later and sing Hymns, #183 first. However, if we are experienced in spirit and realize that even though Hymns, #127 is high, it cannot fully express our inner feeling; then perhaps we can continue with Hymns, #141. In such an uplifted spirit we can break the bread to remember the Lord, singing, "Jesus, Thy head, once crown'd with thorns, / Is crown'd with glory now; / Heaven's royal diadem adorns / The mighty Victor's brow" (stanza 1). If we all remember the Lord in this way, the brothers and sisters will receive an unimaginable supply.
- Come, let us join our cheerful songs,
And thus approach the throne;
Had we ten thousand thousand tongues,
Our theme of joy’s but one:
- “Worthy the Lamb that’s gone on high,
To be exalted thus!“
“Worthy the Lamb that died!” we cry,
“For He was slain for us.”
- Jesus is worthy to receive
Honor and pow’r divine;
And blessings more than we can give
Be, Lord, forever Thine.
- Soon shall the saints, exalted high,
A glorious anthem raise,
And all that dwell beneath the sky
Speak forth Thine endless praise.
- Redeemed creation join in one,
T’adore the sacred name
Of Him that sits upon the throne,
And to exalt the Lamb.