Amazing Grace: 366 Hymn Stories

February 17
Words and Music by Philip P. Bliss, 1838–1876
As the Father has loved Me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. (John 15:9)
The wonder of Jesus’ deep love for each of us has been expressed in this text in beautiful but childlike language by the noted musician of early gospel music, Philip P. Bliss. After attending a service where the hymn “O How I Love Jesus” was sung repeatedly, Bliss thought, “Have I not been singing enough about my poor love for Jesus and shall I not rather sing of His great love for me?” Soon he completed both the words and music of one of the all-time favorite children’s hymn, which is widely sung and enjoyed by adults as well.
Philip Bliss was the dynamic and very talented song writer and associate of evangelists D. L. Moody and Major Daniel W. Whittle. Bliss’ commanding height and impressive personality made his singing and song leading outstanding features in any evangelistic service. His gift for writing gospel hymns was also exceptional. Still widely used today are such other Bliss favorites as: “Wonderful Words of Life,” “It Is Well With My Soul,” “Hold the Fort,” “Hallelujah, What a Savior,” and “Almost Persuaded.” One of his music colleagues, George C. Stebbins, stated:
There has been no writer of verse since his time who has shown such a grasp of the fundamental truths of the gospel, or such a gift for putting them into a poetic and singable form.
The third stanza of this simple but very appealing hymn is especially meaningful when we realize that Philip Bliss died suddenly at the age of 38 in a tragic train accident. His many stirring hymns, however, have lived on. They all focus clearly on important biblical truths, but none is more moving than the reminder in this text that Jesus loves even me.
I am go glad that our Father in heav’n tells of His love in the Book He has giv’n; wonderful things in the Bible I see—this is the dearest that Jesus loves me.
Tho I forget Him and wander away, still He doth love me wherever I stray; back to His dear loving arms would I flee when I remember that Jesus loves me.
O if there’s only one song I can sing when in His beauty I see the great King, this shall my song in eternity be: “O what a wonder that Jesus loves me!”
Chorus: I am so glad that Jesus loves me, Jesus loves me, Jesus loves me; I am so glad that Jesus loves me, Jesus loves even me.

For Today: Romans 5:8; 2 Corinthians 5:21; 1 John 4:9–12

Take time to thank your Lord once more for His great love for you personally, a love that cannot be comprehended but can only be gratefully accepted by faith. Sing as you go—

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