Amazing Grace Hymns

June 28

THE HAVEN OF REST

Henry L. Gilmour, 1836–1920

We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, where Jesus, who went before us, has entered on our behalf. (Hebrews 6:19)

What stabilizers are to a ship in stormy water, the conscious presence of Christ is to a Christian during the storms and stresses of daily living. Christians have never been promised an exemption from any of life’s storms. The Scriptures teach that “man is born to trouble as surely as sparks fly upward” (Job 5:7). It is our reaction to life’s storms that reveals the level of our spiritual maturity. We can either become bitter and belligerent, or we can use the experience to develop greater spiritual strength as we learn to rely more fully on our Lord.

Not only do we have the indwelling presence of Christ, but we also have the assurance that Jesus Christ is in heaven today interceding for us. Just as an Old Testament priest stood behind the veil in the tabernacle or the temple to represent the Israelites before God, so Jesus pleads our case in the heavenly realm on the basis of His death and resurrection. What security this gives us!

The author of this text, Henry Gilmour, came to the United States from Ireland as a teenager. He practiced dentistry for a number of years and then spent the last 25 years of his life as a gospel musician. He was a gifted soloist and was greatly respected as a choir director. “The Haven of Rest” first appeared in Sunlight Songs, published in 1890.

My soul in sad exile was out on life’s sea, so burdened with sin, and distrest, till I heard a sweet voice saying, “Make me your choice!” And I entered the Haven of Rest.

I yielded myself to His tender embrace, and faith taking hold of the Word, my fetters fell off, and I anchored my soul—The “Haven of Rest” is my Lord.

The song of my soul, since the Lord made me whole, has been the old story so blest of Jesus, who’ll save whosoever will have a home in the Haven of Rest!

O come to the Savior—He patiently waits to save by His power divine; Come, anchor your soul in the Haven of Rest, and say, “My Beloved is mine.”

Chorus: I’ve anchored my soul in the Haven of Rest; I’ll sail the wide seas no more; the tempest may sweep o’er the wild, stormy deep—In Jesus I’m safe ever more.

For Today: Exodus 33:22; Psalm 34:19; 61:2; Isaiah 66:12; Philippians 4:7; Hebrews 4:3; 6:13–20

Regardless of your circumstances, determine to rely more fully on the indwelling Christ and the awareness of your heavenly advocate. Carry this musical testimony with you—

Osbeck, K. W. 

EZC

  • And while my glory passeth by, I will put thee in a cleft of the rock, and will cover thee with mine hand while I pass byExodus 33:22
  • Great are the troubles of the righteous: but the Lord delivereth him out of them allPsalm 34:19
  • From the ends of the earth will I cry unto thee: when mine heart is oppressed, bring me upon the rock that is higher than I. Psalm 61:2
  • for thus saith the Lord, behold, I will extend peace over her like a flood, and the glory of the Gentiles like a flowing stream: then shall ye suck, ye shall be born upon her sides, and be joyful upon her kneesIsaiah 66:12
  • And the peace of God which passeth all understanding, shall preserve your hearts and minds in Christ JesusPhilippians 4:7
  • For we which have believed, do enter into rest, as he said to the other, As I have sworn in my wrath, If they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the worldHebrews 4:3
  • For when God made the promise to Abraham, because he had no greater to swear by, he swore by himself, Saying, Surely I will abundantly bless thee, and multiply thee marvelously. And so after that he had tarried patiently, he enjoyed the promise. For men verily swear by him that is greater than themselves, and an oath for confirmation is among them an end of all strife. So God, willing more abundantly to show unto the heirs of promise the stableness of his counsel, bound himself by an oath, That by two immutable things, wherein it is impossible that God should lie, we might have strong consolation, which have our refuge to lay hold upon that hope that is set before us, Which hope we have, as an anchor of the soul, but sure and steadfast, and it entereth into that which is within the veil. Whither the forerunner is for us entered in, even Jesus that is made an high Priest forever after the order of MelchizedekHebrews 6:13–20

Amazing Grace Hymns

June 27

MY SINS ARE BLOTTED OUT, I KNOW!

Words and Music by Merrill Dunlop, 1905–

I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions, for My own sake, and remembers your sins no more. (Isaiah 43:25)

Forgiveness—when God buries our sins and does not mark the grave.
Louis Paul Lehman

Many Christians have suffered great emotional, mental, and even physical disorders throughout life because they could never accept the fact that God has totally forgiven them. How important it is to realize that when God offers us His forgiveness, it is never a partial but always a total forgiveness—the slate is forever clean. In God’s family there are only forgiven children. Then, if we are forgiven by God, we are to accept with gratitude His cleansing provision and, by His help, blot out from our memories all hurting reminders of the past. We should also become a more forgiving person with others, free of the resentments and prejudices that will shackle our spiritual lives. Someone has made this humorous but wise observation: “Christians should keep a cemetery in which to bury the faults and failures of their fellow believers.”

The author and composer of this popular gospel hymn, Merrill Dunlop, gives this account of its origin:

It was written in a very few minutes, although only after much deliberation, while I was crossing the Atlantic in 1927 on a liner, The Leviathan, and meditating upon the verses in Micah 7:18, 19 and upon the great dimensions of the sea—the breadth and depth and what the Bible says about our sins—buried in those depths—removed—blotted out! Then, making it personal, I said: “My sins are blotted out, I know!” The melody came almost simultaneously with the words. I jotted the chorus down aboard the ship, as I walked the deck. Later, in Ireland, I added the words and music to the stanzas. It took hold immediately and quickly spread across America and across the seas.
* * * *

What a wondrous message in God’s Word! My sins are blotted out, I know! If I trust in His redeeming blood, my sins are blotted out, I know!

Once my heart was black, but now what joy; my sins are blotted out, I know! I have peace that nothing can destroy; my sins are blotted out, I know!

I shall stand some day before my King; my sins are blotted out, I know! With the ransomed host I then shall sing: “My sins are blotted out, I know!”

Chorus: My sins are blotted out, I know! My sins are blotted out, I know! They are buried in the depths of the deepest sea: My sins are blotted out, I know!

For Today: Psalm 103:1, 3, 11, 12; Isaiah 1:18; 43:25; Micah 7:18, 19

Live in the assurance of God’s complete forgiveness. Then determine to forgive and forget the wrongs that others may have done to you. Let your heart be glad as you rejoice in this musical truth—

Osbeck, K. W. 

EZC

  • My soul, praise thou the Lord, and all that is within me, praise his holy NamePsalm 103:1
  • Which forgiveth all thine iniquity, and healeth all thine infirmities. Psalm 103:3
  • For as high as the heaven is above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him. Psalm 103:11
  • As far as the East is from the West: so far hath he removed our sins from us. Psalm 103:12
  • Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins were as crimson, they shall be made white as snow: though they were red like scarlet, they shall be as woolIsaiah 1:18
  • I, even I am he that putteth away thine iniquities for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins. Isaiah 43:25
  • Who is a God like unto thee, that taketh away iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage! He retaineth not his wrath forever, because mercy pleaseth him. He will turn again, and have compassion upon us: he will subdue our iniquities, and cast all their sins into the bottom of the seaMicah 7:18-19

Amazing Grace Hymns

June 25

O HAPPY DAY

Philip Doddridge, 1702–1751

I delight greatly in the Lord; my soul rejoices in my God. For He has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of righteousness. (Isaiah 61:10)

It is always encouraging to share in a testimonial service by recalling with other believers the time we responded to God’s loving invitation for personal salvation. To remember what we were, how we were going, and where we could be today had not God encountered us is truly an important spiritual activity. But we must also be quick to note that the “happy day” of our new birth was never intended to be the final goal for our lives. Rather it was the starting point for developing a Christ-like life and an endless fellowship with our Lord.

Along with Isaac Watts and Charles Wesley, Philip Doddridge is generally ranked as one of England’s finest 18th century hymn writers. “O Happy Day,” a text which expresses so aptly the sense of joy in a personal relationship with God, is Doddridge’s best-known hymn today. The hymn first appeared without the refrain in the 1775 collection of Doddridge’s writings, published posthumously, as were all of his 400 hymn texts. The music did not appear for nearly 100 years after the text. It was likely adapted from one of the popular secular tunes of that time.

O happy day that fixed my choice on Thee, my Savior and my God! Well may this glowing heart rejoice and tell its raptures all abroad.

O happy bond that seals my vows to Him who merits all my love! Let cheerful anthems fill His house, while to that sacred shrine I move.

High Heav’n that heard the solemn vow, that vow renewed shall daily hear; till in life’s latest hour I bow, and bless in death a bond so dear.

’Tis done, the great transaction’s done—I am my Lord’s and He is mine; He drew me, and I followed on, charmed to confess the voice divine.

Now rest, my long-divided heart, fixed on this blissful center, rest; nor ever from my Lord depart, with Him of ev’ry good possessed.

Chorus: Happy day, happy day, when Jesus washed my sins away! He taught me how to watch and pray and live rejoicing ev’ry day; happy day, happy day, when Jesus washed my sins away!

For Today: Psalm 32:11; 70:4; Habakkuk 3:18; Philippians 4:4; 1 John 1:8, 9

Share with someone your conversion experience—the events that prompted the decision when you first fully realized that you were truly God’s child. Carry this musical testimony with you—

Osbeck, K. W. 

EZC

  • Be glad ye righteous, and rejoice in the Lord, and be joyful all ye, that are upright in heartPsalm 32:11
  • O God, haste thee to deliver me: make haste to help me, O Lord. Psalm 70:4
  • But I will rejoice in the Lord: I will joy in the God of my salvation. Habakkuk 3:18
  • Rejoice in the Lord always, again I say, rejoice. Philippians 4:4
  • If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 1 John 1:8-9