Idle, Christopher Martin


b Bromley, Kent 1938. Eltham Coll, St Peter’s Coll Oxford (BA, English), Clifton Theol Coll Bristol; ordained in 1965 to a Barrow-in-Furness curacy. He spent 30 years in CofE parish ministry, some in rural Suffolk, mainly in inner London (Peckham, Poplar and Limehouse). Author of over 300 hymn texts, mainly Scripture based, collected in Light upon the River (1998) and Walking by the River (2008), Trees along the River (2018), and now appearing in some 300 books and other publications; see also the dedication of EP1 (p3) to his late wife Marjorie. He served on 5 editorial groups from Psalm Praise (1973) to Praise!; his writing includes ‘Grove’ booklets Hymns in Today’s Language (1982) and Real Hymns, Real Hymn Books (2000), and The Word we preach, the words we sing (Reform, 1998). He edited the quarterly News of Hymnody for 10 years, and briefly the Bulletin of the Hymn Society, on whose committee he served at various times between 1984 and 2006; and addressed British and American Hymn Socs. Until 1996 he often exchanged draft texts with Michael Perry (qv) for mutual criticism and encouragement. From 1995 he was engaged in educational work and writing from home in Peckham, SE London, until retirement in 2003; following his return to Bromley after a gap of 40 years, he has attended Holy Trinity Ch Bromley Common and Hayes Lane Baptist Ch. Owing much to the Proclamation Trust, he also belongs to the Anglican societies Crosslinks and Reform, together with CND and the Christian pacifist Fellowship of Reconciliation. A former governor of 4 primary schools, he has also written songs for school assemblies set to familiar tunes, and (in 2004) Grandpa’s Amazing Poems and Awful Pictures. His bungalow is smoke-free, alcohol-free, car-free, gun-free and TV-free. Nos.13, 18, 21, 23A, 24B, 27B, 28, 31, 35, 36, 37, 48, 50, 68, 78, 79, 80, 81, 83, 85, 89, 92, 95, 102, 108, 109, 114, 118, 119A, 121A, 125, 128, 131, 145B, 157, 176, 177, 193*, 313*, 333, 339, 388, 392, 420, 428, 450, 451, 463, 478, 506, 514, 537, 548, 551, 572, 594, 597, 620, 621, 622, 636, 668, 669, 693, 747, 763, 819, 914, 917, 920, 945, 954, 956, 968, 976, 1003, 1012, 1084, 1098, 1138, 1151, 1158, 1159, 1178, 1179, 1181, 1201, 1203, 1204, 1205, 1209, 1210, 1211, 1212, 1221, 1227, 1236, 1237, 1244, 1247, 5017, 5018, 5019, 5020.

Hymns and songs by Idle, Christopher Martin

Number Hymn Name
CP11 Eternity once entered time
13 How long will you forget me, Lord
18 I love you, O Lord, you alone
21 Lord, to you we lift our voices
23A The Lord my shepherd rules my life
24B This earth belongs to God
27B Light and salvation is the Lord for me
28 O Lord my rock, to you I cry aloud
31 In you, O Lord, I find my refuge
35 Contend, O Lord, with those
36 No fear of God before the eyes
37 When lawless people thrive
48 Great is the Lord: His praise is great
50 God the Lord, the King Almighty
68 Let God arise! His enemies be gone
78 Listen, my friends, to each word
79 O God, the heathen have attacked
80 Israel’s shepherd, hear our prayer
81 To God our strength come, sing aloud
83 O God, do not keep silent
85 When this land knew God’s gracious love outpoured
89 For ever, Lord, I’ll sing your love
92 Make music to the Lord most high
95 Come with all joy to sing to God
102 Lord, hear my prayer! My cry shall come before you
108 My heart is ready, O my God
109 How wickedly they spread their lies
114 When Israel fled from Egypt
118 Give thanks to God, for he is good, the everlasting Giver
119A All your commandments Father Almighty
121A I to the hills lift up my eyes
125 Those who rely on the Lord are unshakeable
128 Blessed are those who fear the Lord
131 Lord, you have weaned my heart from pride
145B I will exalt you, God my King
157 God of my life, to you I pray
176 Glory in the highest to the God of heaven
177 God, we praise you! God, we bless you!
193 Round the Lord in glory seated
313 Let us love and sing and wonder
333 The Word was very God
339 True light, blazing in the darkest place
388 Wise men, they came to look for wisdom
392 When Jesus led his chosen three
420 He stood before the court
428 In silent pain the eternal Son
450 When you prayed beneath the trees
451 Who believes what we have heard
463 If Christ had not been raised from death
478 Ascended Christ, who gained
506 Christ is surely coming, bringing his reward
514 When the King shall come again
537 Spirit of holiness, wisdom and faithfulness
548 How sure the scriptures are!
551 Powerful in making us wise to salvation
572 Jesus, come, for we invite you
594 Father and God, from whom the world derives
597 Preachers of the God of grace
620 Glory to God, the source of all our mission
621 God of the world’s great cities
622 God’s word to God’s world! In one name alone
636 Baptized into Christ Jesus
668 Christ is all the world’s good news
669 Listen! Wisdom cries aloud
693 Eternal Light, shine in my heart
747 Freedom and life are ours
763 In life or death, Lord Jesus Christ
819 Whatever things are lovely
914 Creator God, with whom we share
917 Rain on the earth by heaven’s blessing
920 As the light upon the river
945 Our God, supreme and good
954 Must the sword devour for ever
956 My Lord, you wore no royal crown
968 Christ has prepared for us a place
976 Then I saw a new heaven and earth
1003 O praise the Lord
1012 If this is not our world
1084 God, loving ruler of our world
1098 Earth’s celebration of God’s ways
1138 When numbers are against us
1151 Our view across the miles gone by
1158 God of all human history
1159 Our Teacher and Master, Redeemer and Lord
1178 He said, the Spirit of the Lord
1179 He said, he came to seek the lost
1181 What joy, when all the talk
1201 Can God be with the brothers
1203 Lord, in your hand is every life
1204 From small beginnings in the past
1205 God who gives the second chance
1209 Lord, how we treasure helpers and carers
1210 Some things we long for
1211 This is the man who runs with God
1212 Grace is the gift that God alone
1221 What joy it is to see our childrens’ children
1227 The powers of kings
1236 Search our hearts, we pray, Lord
1237 Trees along the river
1244 Let my people go
1247 The Lord called Moses
5017 The wise man built his house upon the rock
5018 Zacchaeus was a very little man
5019 First God said, ‘Let there be light’
5020 Faithful Joseph