The hymn, “All Creatures of our God and King”, has its roots with St. Francis of Assisi. Around 1224, St. Francis of Assisi wrote the poem “Canticle of the Sun”, which is based off of Psalm 148. The psalmist expounds on the story of creation and reminds us of our place in the order of creation and our role as stewards of the earth.
In Genesis 1:26, God says, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule. . . over all the earth” (italics added). The plurality behind the decision to add an ultimate creature to rule creation means that our forming was not done in isolation or with the intention to divide but instead was to be complementary and unified which speaks to the character of the Author. The Triune God announcement that we are to care for something which is not ours places our relationship to creation and Creator in place.
With a thankful heart, the text of this song reminds us, like in Psalm 148, that we can not make the stars or the heavens. And most importantly, it retells the story of salvation. In God’s meta-narrative we receive salvation, we can not create it. This is the good news: Christ died, Christ is risen and Christ will come again. We have a story to sing until Jesus’ second coming.All-Creatures-Of-Our-God-And-King