10 of the Best Christian Poems

Christian poems date back centuries and can be found in a wide variety of styles. Poets as different as Maya Angelou and Robert Herrick have penned the best Christian poems

Readers can explore ten of the best Christian poems written by a wide variety of authors on this list. From Edna St. Vincent Millay to John Donne, the poet on this list have interesting and important messages to share about their faith and how they see it, negatively and positively, in the real world.

Best Christian Poems


A Hymn to God, My God, in My Sickness by John Donne

A Hymn to God, My God, in My Sickness’ by John Donne is a popular poem written in devotion to God from the perspective of a dying man. The man addresses God expressing his hope that he makes it into Heaven. Donne writes: 

Since I am coming to that holy room, 

Where, with thy choir of saints for evermore, 

I shall be made thy music; as I come 

I tune the instrument here at the door, 

And what I must do then, think here before. 

Read more John Donne poems

The Altar by George Herbert

The Altar’ is a well-known Christian poem written by religious poet George Herbert. It is a direct and devotional poem that depicts the speaker’s desire to make a sacrifice similar to that which Christ made on the cross. Herbert begins with the lines: 

A broken ALTAR, Lord, thy servant rears,

Made of a heart and cemented with tears:

Whose parts are as thy hand did frame;

No workman’s tool hath touch’d the same.

Discover more George Herbert poems

They Are All Gone into the World of Light by Henry Vaughan

‘They are all Gone into the World of Light’ by Henry Vaughan is a religious poem that describes a speaker’s longing to understand what death is and where his loved ones have gone. The speaker begins by mourning the fact that he feels alone in the world. He wonders about the nature of death and expresses his confusion about the afterlife. The first lines read: 

They are all gone into the world of light! 

And I alone sit ling’ring here; 

Their very memory is fair and bright, 

And my sad thoughts doth clear. 

Explore Henry Vaughan’s poems

God’s Grandeur by Gerard Manley Hopkins

‘God’s Grandeur’ is one of Hopkins’ best-known poems. It begins with the lines: 

The world is charged with the grandeur of God.

It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;

It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil

The poet expresses his belief that the world is changed due to God’s presence. He contrasts humanity’s presence on earth, the natural world, and God’s loving presence within his creation. While the poem does, briefly, present a pessimist a picture of the world and ends with a more optimistic note about the future.

Read Gerard Manley Hopkins poems

God’s World by Edna St. Vincent Millay 

Millay’s ‘God’s World’ is a modern lyric poem that speaks on nature and the importance of everything God created. The speaker wants to hold the earth to her and keep it close as possible. The world and all its landscapes are important to her, something she outlines in the lines: 

O world, I cannot hold thee close enough!

Thy winds, thy wide grey skies!

Thy mists, that roll and rise!

Explore more Edna St. Vicent Millay poems.

To Find God by Robert Herrick

To Find God’ is centered on the question of God’s existence. The speaker does not claim to know one way or another if God exists. Instead, he simply asks the question and lets readers be inspired by his imagery. The first lines read: 

Weigh me the fire; or canst thou find

A way to measure out the wind?

Distinguish all those floods that are

Mixed in that wat’ry theater,

And taste thou them as saltless there,

As in their channel first they were.

Discover more Robert Herrick poems

The Creation by James Weldon Johnson

‘The Creation’ is a well-known Johnson poem that depicts the story of Genesis from the Christian bible. It contains a human-like image of God, the man behind the creation. According to the speaker, God felt lonely and was inspired to create the earth. But, he was not satisfied until he made humans. Here are a few lines: 

Then God reached out and took the light in his hands,

And God rolled the light around in his hands

Until he made the sun;

And he set that sun a-blazing in the heavens.

And the light that was left from making the sun

God gathered it up in a shining ball

And flung it against the darkness,

Spangling the night with the moon and stars.

Discover more James Weldon Johnson poems

A Thank-Offering by Ella Higginson

A Thank-Offering’ by Ella Higginson is a beautiful poem that gives thanks to God for all the world has to offer. Higginson uses direct, easy-to-read language while sharing her beliefs. She writes: 

Lord God, the winter has been sweet and brief

     In this fair land;

For us the budded willow and the leaf,

     The peaceful strand.

For us the silver nights and golden days,

     The violet mist;

The pearly clouds pierced with vibrating rays

     Of amethyst.

The poem concludes with the speaker thanking God for all he has provided.

Read more Ella Higginson poems.

Ash Wednesday by T.S. Eliot

Ash Wednesday’ is characteristic of Eliot’s longer verse. His speaker, who is generally considered to be the poet himself, describes his desire for a new life, created by God. This poem is a great example of how Eliot’s verse changed throughout his career. The poem includes the lines: 

And pray to God to have mercy upon us

And pray that I may forget

These matters that with myself I too much discuss

Too much explain

Because I do not hope to turn again

Let these words answer

For what is done, not to be done again

May the judgement not be too heavy upon us

Explore more poetry from T.S. Eliot.

Savior by Maya Angelou

Angelou’s ‘Savior’ is a moving Christian poem that explores religious changes since Christ was crucified. Angelou’s speaker suggests that the true essence of the faith which is discussed in this poem has been lost. The poem includes the lines: 

Visit us again, Savior.

Your children, burdened with

disbelief, blinded by a patina

of wisdom,

carom down this vale of

fear. […]

Explore more Maya Angelou poems.

FAQs

What is a Christian poem?

A Christian poem is a piece of poetry that deals with the specifics of Christianity. This includes but is not limited to passages and stories from the Bible, Christian religious teachings, addresses to the Christian God, analyses of Christianity in the modern world, and more.

Is there a poem in the Bible? 

There are large sections of poetry within the Bible. Not to mention the Proverbs and Psalms. For example, Psalm 84and Psalm 23: The Lord is my Shepherd’ by King David of Israel. 

How can one write a Christian poem?

To write a Christian poem, a poet needs to analyze what Christianity means to them. The vast majority of Christian poems, especially those which easily fall under this categorization, are written by poets are of a Christian faith. This means it is important to review the meaning of your face and beliefs in the text.

What is a religious poem? 

A religious poem is any piece of writing that uses poetic language and is inspired by religious themes. It does not have to be particularly devotional in nature to be religious.

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About
Emma graduated from East Carolina University with a BA in English, minor in Creative Writing, BFA in Fine Art, and BA in Art Histories. Literature is one of her greatest passions which she pursues through analyzing poetry on Poem Analysis.
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