Since 1888, people have been singing the joyous strains of “Blessed Be the Name.” The words to the verse of this song were written by William Clark, and the words to the chorus were written by Ralph Hudson (who, incidentally, also provided the chorus for “At the Cross”). The tune was also written by Ralph Hudson, but the harmonization of the tune (a technical musical process that makes the music complete) was done by William Kirkpatrick in 1888.
Of course, many of our beloved hymns and gospel songs resulted from very special or tragic situations. “It Is Well With My Soul,” for example, was written after Horatio Spafford tragically lost his four daughters at sea. “No One Ever Cared for Me Like Jesus” was written after Evangelist Charles Weigle’s wife walked out on him, declaring that she didn’t want the Christian life.
But “Blessed Be the Name” has no special story. The words were simply written in a joint effort by two men, and the music was written in another collaborative effort by two men. To our knowledge, there were no tragic circumstances; there was no sad story. The song is simply the product of good men faithfully doing their work without fanfare or hoopla. And so we still sing,
All praise to Him who reigns above
In majesty supreme,
Who gave His Son for man to die,
That He might man redeem!