Amazing Grace: 366 Hymn Stories

November 30

Fanny J. Crosby, 1820–1915
So that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. (Romans 15:6)
The aim and final reason for all music should be nothing else but the glory of God and the refreshment of the spirit.
—J. S. Bach
To give glory to God should be the greatest desire of every Christian. Not only should this be the supreme goal for our individual lives, but it should also be true whenever we gather in our local churches. “In the presence of the congregation I will sing Your praises” (Hebrews 2:12). We must always be alert in recognizing God’s leading in our midst and in acknowledging His hand of blessing upon our corporate endeavors—the “great things He hath taught us and the great things He hath done.” Without this sensitive awareness and gratitude, churches, like individuals, can easily lose the focus of their mission and develop a false sense of self-worth and sufficiency.
This fine gospel hymn first appeared in a Sunday school collection, Brightest and Best, compiled by William Doane and Robert Lowry in 1875. In 1952 the Billy Graham Crusade Team went to England, where they first made extensive use of the hymn in their meetings. It was an immediate success. Upon their return to the United States, they found the same enthusiastic response by American audiences. It has been a favorite hymn ever since.
“To God Be the Glory” differs from most of the hymns written by Fanny Crosby in that it is a more objective praise of God rather than the typical subjective testimony or Christian experience type of song. It is a fine blend of the characteristics of both the hymn and the gospel song.
To God be the glory—great things He hath done! So loved He the world that He gave us His Son, who yielded His life an atonement for sin and opened the Lifegate that all may go in.
O perfect redemption, the purchase of blood! To ev’ry believer the promise of God; the vilest offender who truly believes, that moment from Jesus a pardon receives.
Great things He hath taught us, great things He hath done, and great our rejoicing thru Jesus the Son; but purer and higher and greater will be our wonder, our transport, when Jesus we see.
Chorus: Praise the lord, Praise the Lord, let the earth hear His voice! Praise the Lord, Praise the Lord, let the people rejoice! O come to the Father thru Jesus the Son, and give Him the glory—great things He hath done.

    For Today: Psalm 29:2; Romans 11:36; Galatians 1:4, 5; Ephesians 3:21

Reflect seriously on whether God’s glory is really the desire of your life. Also, give Him a testimony of praise for His blessings upon your local church.

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