The consolaton of hymns

The consolations of God - Twelfth in a series

For this post, I had planned to select five hymns as the most consoling ones ever written. I began my research at HymnTime.com, but did not quite make it through the “A’s”! There are too many consoling hymns to select only five. However, here are my candidates for the most consoling ones whose titles start with “A” along with the verse I vote for as Best Consoling Stanza.

1. Abide with Me - lyrics, Henry Lyte, 1847
Fourth stanza:

Come not in terrors, as the King of kings,

But kind and good, with healing in Thy wings,

Tears for all woes, a heart for every plea—

Come, friend of sinners, and thus bide with me.

Jesus, our friend and intercessor, is moved by our pleas.

2. All the Way My Savior Leads Me - lyrics, Fanny Crosby, published 1875
First stanza:

All the way my Savior leads me;

What have I to ask beside?

Can I doubt His tender mercy,

Who through life has been my guide?

Heav’nly peace, divinest comfort,

Here by faith in Him to dwell!

For I know, whate’er befall me,

Jesus doeth all things well;
���For I know, whate’er befall me,

Jesus doeth all things well.

Jesus, divine comforter by His Spirit, makes no mistakes.

3. Almighty Father of Mankind - lyrics, Michael Bruce (1746-1767)
Fifth stanza:

Thou wilt not cast me off when age

And evil days descend;

Thou wilt not leave me in despair

To mourn my latter end.

Jesus is with us always, to the end of the age, or the end of our days.

4. And Can It Be That I Should Gain - lyrics, Charles Wesley, pub. 1738
Sixth stanza:

No condemnation now I dread;

Jesus, and all in Him, is mine;

Alive in Him, my living head,

And clothed in righteousness divine,

Bold I approach th’eternal throne,

And claim the crown, through Christ my own.

Bold I approach th’eternal throne,

And claim the crown, through Christ my own.

There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1)

5. Arise, My Soul, Arise - lyrics, Charles Wesley, pub. 1742
Fifth stanza:

My God is reconciled; His pardoning voice I hear;

He owns me for His child; I can no longer fear:

With confidence I now draw nigh,

With confidence I now draw nigh,

And “Father, Abba, Father,” cry.

For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. (2 Tim 1:7) As God and His Word console us, we naturally are led to compose hymns and to sing.

God's Consoling Presence Part 1

The consolations of God - Fifth in a series

God is in all places at all times. We learn as children that he is omnipresent and exists eternally, outside of time. So, what does it mean when we say or read that his presence is with a person or nation? Or that the Lord casts people away from his presence?

The Bible has many instances of the word Presence or face of God. Jacob named the place where he wrestled with God, Peniel or presence. (Gen 32:29-30)

Psalm 114:7 instructs us to tremble at the presence of the Lord, and Psalm 100:2 says, …come before his presence with singing. David begs the Lord after his sin with Bathsheba, Cast me not away from your presence and take not thy holy spirit from me. (Ps 51:11) God proclaims to Judah, the nation, I will forsake you, and the city that I gave you and your fathers, and cast you out of my presence… (Jer 23:39b)

These diverse passages teach that God's presence can be terrifying, yet much to be desired, and it is possible for man to be removed from it. The theological truth is that God is omnipresent but our experience or perception of it is fine-tuned by many influences.

There is an expression, "If you feel far from God, who moved?" This implies the person has lost faith and therefore feels far from God. But is this always the case? That person may be in the midst of a great test of faith.

True, we may feel far from the long suffering, good Presence (Ex 34:6-7) because of our own blindness and sins, or try hiding from the Lord, to no avail, of course. (Gen 3:8; Jon 1:3) True repentance is then required for reunion with Him. (2 Cor 7:10)

Fill their faces with shame; that they may seek thy name, O LORD. (Ps 83:16)

And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart. (Jer 29:13)

But it is good for me to draw near to God: I have put my trust in the Lord GOD, that I may declare all thy works. (Ps 73:28)

When God's presence is a wonderful consolation, then his omnipresence is, too.

The Consolation of Certainty

The consolations of God - Fourth in a series

God has designed that we should have certainty in our faith. He has given us "many infallible proofs," (Acts 1:3) the testimony of the entire Word, His Holy Spirit, and the fellowship of the saints, to name some ways by which we are upheld in belief.

Nevertheless in the course of our lives we will have many occasions to cry out, "Help my unbelief!" (Mark 9:24)

No matter how hard we study to be approved (2 Tim 2:15), pray, serve, or do any of the things that uphold our belief, we will experience people, incidents and attacks by the Rulers of Darkness (Eph 6:12) that disturb our peace and faith.

Then, confusion, doubt and fear clamor for first place in the race to conquer our minds. Feelings of emptiness, anxiety and various sinful reactions and emotions sabotage us — We are shrinking back — the very thing we don't want to do. (Heb 10:38)

So, repent and return. Begin the journey home to Life. Thoughts and emotions must be brought under the control of the Holy Spirit, or one cannot function as a Christian.

Being a Christian means having FAITH—thinking and knowing, that

  • God is good
  • God is love and He loves us
  • God is in control, and He is working his purposes out
  • He is with us, helping us
  • We belong to Him; He is a careful owner
  • He is worthy of our love and praise
  • He has never made a mistake of any sort!

Therefore we set aside private hurts, refuse any long-term discouragement, and maintain an outlook that proves we DO trust in God; we WILL RESIST the devil (James 4:6), pray, think and act in ways that express we are under His providential, loving care, no matter how we feel or what the appearances are.

In time, assurance returns. And no pastime, vacation, sport or spree of any sort can bring the renewal of joy as will the peace of assurance. There is no true rest nor relaxation but in the peace of Christ that comes from certainty in our faith.

My peace I give you. (John 14:27)

Be still and know that I am God. (Ps 46:10)

Attention Readers

Have you visited the Biotech Blog on this website? Find information and resources to help you think about biotech as a Christian.

During the summer of 2017, I explored the topic of kidney donation. Is it right for a society to permit that? To encourage it? What do you think? Read the Live Kidney Donation Series!

Should you sign your driver’s license to be an organ donor? Is cremation OK with God? Do these practices undermine the Christian doctrine of the Resurrection?

Learn more. The conscience cannot function without facts.


Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. -Mat 5:14

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