The tune is a Russian folk melody, "Iz-za ostrova na strezhen" or "Volga, Volga mat' rodnaya", which was used for a song about a Cossack leader who led an uprising in the 17th century. The composer and when it was written are unknown, bu t it was popular in the 1890s, The tune has been used in a number of ways, eg for a Dutch nursery rhyme and for the Australian folk-song The Carnival is Over" in the 1960s.
The Russian folk song which the hymn is based on:
Lyrics:Vaster far than any ocean,
Deeper than the deepest sea
Is the love of Christ my Saviour,
Reaching through eternity.
But my sins are truly many,
Is God’s grace so vast, so deep?
Yes, there’s grace o’er sin abounding,
Grace to pardon, grace to keep.
Can he quench my thirst for ever?
Will his Spirit strength impart?
Yes, he gives me living water
Springing up within my heart.
T:Vaster Far Than any Ocean
B,>B, | E3 E F>E | E2 D2 B,>B, | A3 F B>F | G4 E>E |
c3 B Ac | B2 G2 GE | C3 B, C>E | E4 z ]
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