August 26, 2009

John Newton hymning on Prayer

this Sunday, Pastor Drew is preaching from Matthew 6 on the Lord's Prayer. if you didn't catch his post about how well you know the Lord's Prayer, check it out here.

one of the quotes from this week's reflection is taken from a hymn by John Newton. the first line is a beautiful invitation: "Come, my soul, thy suit prepare". the hymn provides us with wonderful guidance in the posture of prayer (see full text below).

I'm a firm believer that the second most important book in a Christian's library is a hymnal, and this text demonstrates this superbly. as with the Biblical Psalms, hymns give voice to the heart of the worshiper. not only that, they teach us the language of prayer. regularly supplementing your study of the Bible with reflection upon hymn texts is a prescription for a healthy devotional life.

Come, My Soul, Thy Suit Prepare
available in Trinity Hymnal #628 (1990 edition)

Come, my soul, thy suit prepare;
Jesus loves to answer prayer;
He himself has bid thee pray,
Therefore will not say thee, Nay.

Thou art coming to a King:
Large petitions with thee bring;
For his grace and power are such,
None can ever ask too much.

With my burden I begin:
Lord, remove this load of sin;
Let thy blood, for sinners spilt,
Set my conscience free from guilt.

Lord, I come to thee for rest;
Take possession of my breast;
There thy blood-bought right maintain,
And without a rival reign.

While I am a pilgrim here,
Let thy love my spirit cheer;
As my guide, my guard, my friend,
Lead me to my journey's end.

Show me what I have to do;
Every hour my strength renew;
Let me live a life of faith;
Let me die thy people's death.


links:
More information at Hymnary.org
Full text of Newton's "Olney Hymns"

3 comments:

Amstr said...

Will we get to hear this as an offertory? A new version? (If so, post it! We'll be out of town on Sun.)

lbrodine said...

we won't be doing it this week. I haven't started a rewrite yet, but it seems to be a good candidate! perhaps a co-write?

robert said...

Glad to read your comment that the second most important book in a Christian's library is the hymn book. I agree 100%, and I've been studying hymns and writing about them for about 40 years as a result.

Most people know John Newton's hymn "Amazing Grace," but how many know "Come, My Soul, Thy Suit Prepare"? (Fewer than should!) The second verse in particular is stunning, a powerful statement about the resources available to the believer through prayer.

Today is the 202nd anniversary of Newton's death. If you enjoy reading about hymns and their authors, I invite you to check out my daily blog on the subject, Wordwise Hymns. I believe it would be a blessing to you.