Philip Doddridge DD (26 June 1702 – 26 October 1751)
English Nonconformist leader, educator, and hymnwriter with independent religious leanings. Philip Doddridge declined offers which would have led him into the Anglican ministry.
Throughout the 1730s and 1740s Philip Doddridge continued his academic and pastoral work, and developed close relations with numerous early religious revivalists and independents, through extensive visits and correspondence. Through this approach he helped establish and maintain a circle of influential independent religious thinkers and writers, including Dr Isaac Watts.
Doddridge was a prolific writer. His The Rise and Progress of Religion in the Soul was translated into seven languages. Charles Spurgeon referred to The Rise and Progress as "that holy book". Reading this book led William Wilberforce, the anti-slave trade campaigner, to become a Christian. Besides a New Testament commentary and other theological works, Doddridge also wrote over 400 hymns.
From Johannes Leisentritt's Catholicam Hymnologium Germanicum (1584)
adapted by Willuam Henry Havergal (1983-1870)
Ye servants of the Lord,
Each in his office wait,
Observant of his heavenly word,
And watchful at his gate.
Let all your lamps be bright,
And trim the golden flame;
Gird up your loins, as in his sight,
For awful is his name.
Watch, 'tis your Lord's command;
And while we speak, he's near;
Mark the first signal of his hand,
And ready all appear.
O happy servant he
In such a posture found!
He shall his Lord with rapture see,
And be with honor crowned.
Christ shall the banquet spread
With his own bounteous hand,
And raise that favorite servant's head
Amidst th' angelic band.