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The Gospel Coalition’s Songs for the Book of Luke closes with “The Spirit of the Lord,” a song about the Holy Spirit’s work in both testaments, and His work in the Church today.

As you might guess, this is a great song to lead on Pentecost Sunday, as we did at my church recently. It’s also a good companion for any sermon about the Holy Spirit, and it’s a good set piece for the Lord’s Supper.

“The Spirit of the Lord” is a modern hymn, four verses long. Listen to it here, as recorded by TGC musicians and vocalist Melanie Penn:

The first verse reminds us that the Holy Spirit was upon the prophets who spoke of the coming Messiah. The second describes the scene from Luke 4:16-30, where Jesus reads Isaiah 61 and declares Himself to be the One spoken of, in that great prophesy.

The final two verses carry this story from the cross into the birth of the Church on Pentecost. We end with an affirmation that this same Spirit moves in our hearts today:

The Spirit of the Lord, the Spirit of the Lord
Is upon us, is upon us, is upon us

While many modern worship songs implore the Spirit to move in our midst or to bring revival, there aren’t as many that say, “The Spirit is here. He lives within us even now.”

“The Spirit of the Lord” was written by Bruce Benedict and Naaman Wood of Christ The King Presbyterian Church in Raleigh, North Carolina. Bruce and Naaman are part of a collective of worship leaders known as Cardiphonia ( Visit the Songs For The Book of Luke website for their “story behind the song,” as well as a free chord sheet and lead sheet, and a video demonstration of a way to simply lead this song on piano.



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3 thoughts on “Why You Should Lead “The Spirit Of The Lord” In Gathered Worship”

  1. Andrew says:

    I admire this project, but I have found most of the songs are not very singable… Why would you sing ‘The Spirit of the Lord is Upon Us’ (one of the most incredible and joyful realities imaginable) with such a depressing monotonic melody? Every song ever written by the Gettys blows this song away – I admire the vision and love to sing God’s word… but not everyone is a song-writer.

    1. Matt Boswell says:


      Thanks for your comment. Have you listened to the songs with just acoustic and voice? We think the majority of these songs can be used in congregational worship, and in fact are by many churches.

      With as many resources as we have for congregational singing today, feel free to pass this by and find something that is useful to your church. At the same time, let’s not be prescriptive of style toward the beauty and diversity of the church in song.


  2. bruce says:

    Hi andrew, Sorry i’m late to the comments here. I think the musical arr. of this text on the CD is wonderfully meditative and really helps us to steep in some pretty dense lyricing on the Holy Spirit. So few of us have the opportunity to sing both “to” and “about” the Spirit in the same song…so I think it’s worth wading through. If you want to hear a different arr. that our church uses when we sing this I’ve pasted a link below. bless, Bruce

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Bobby Gilles has written several of Sojourn Music’s popular worship songs for albums like The Water and the Blood, and Before the Throne. He serves as director of communications for Sojourn Church in Louisville, Kentucky.