Tag Archives: charles wesley

Scripture at Sunrise 11.20.09

“Christ Jesus…is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.”  -Romans 8:34

Arise, my soul, arise; shake off thy guilty fears;
The bleeding sacrifice in my behalf appears:
Before the throne my surety stands,
Before the throne my surety stands,
My name is written on His hands.

He ever lives above, for me to intercede;
His all redeeming love, His precious blood, to plead:
His blood atoned for all our race,
His blood atoned for all our race,
And sprinkles now the throne of grace.

Five bleeding wounds He bears; received on Calvary;
They pour effectual prayers; they strongly plead for me:
“Forgive him, O forgive,” they cry,
“Forgive him, O forgive,” they cry,
“Nor let that ransomed sinner die!”

The Father hears Him pray, His dear anointed One;
He cannot turn away, the presence of His Son;
His Spirit answers to the blood,
His Spirit answers to the blood,
And tells me I am born of God.

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.

[Words by Charles Wes­ley; Music by Lew­is Ed­son]

Scripture at Sunrise 8.28.09

“I will give you one heart and a new spirit; I will take from you your hearts of stone and give you tender hearts of love for God, so that you can obey My laws and be My people, and I will be your God.”  -Ezekiel 11:19-20

O For a  Heart to Praise My God
O for a heart to praise my God,
a heart from sin set free,
a heart that always feels thy blood
so freely shed for me.

A heart resigned, submissive, meek,
my great Redeemer’s throne,
where only Christ is heard to speak,
where Jesus reigns alone.

A humble, lowly, contrite heart,
believing, true, and clean,
which neither life nor death can part
from Christ who dwells within.

A heart in every thought renewed
and full of love divine,
perfect and right and pure and good,
a copy, Lord, of Thine.

Thy nature, gracious Lord, impart;
come quickly from above;
write thy new name upon my heart,
Thy new, best name of Love.
[by Charles Wesley 1707-1788]

Story Behind the Song
It is not surprising that John and Charles Wesley should be concerned about the human heart.  After all, they had gone through the motions of a heartless Christianity fr years.  It was not enough, they discovered, for a person to be religious, moral, and orthodox.  They had been all that—as ordained clergymen, they knew the gospel well.  But their hearts still had to be changed by an encounter with God’s Word.  As John Wesley read Luther’s commentary of Galatians and then read about “the Son of God, Who loved me and gave Himself for me” (Galatians 2:20), the personal pronouns struck him.  Suddenly he saw the necessity of a personal faith that would change the heart.

This hymn, written by Charles Wesley less than four years after his conversion, is based on Psalm 51:10, “Create in me a pure heart, O God.”  He knew as well as anybody that that was the only way he could truly be what God wanted him to be.
[from The One Year Book of Hymns, August 26 entry]

Scripture at Sunrise 5.15.09

“I…heard the voice of many angels, numbering thousands upon thousands.” -Revelation 5:11

Did you ever know this song had a thousand verses?  You are encouraged to read them all.  They’re each chock-full of truth!  According to nethymnal.org, Charles Wesley wrote this hymn to com­mem­o­rate the first an­ni­ver­sa­ry of his con­ver­sion to Christ, seen especially in the ninth stanza.

O For a Thousand Tongues to Sing– by Charles Wesley, 1739

O for a thousand tongues to sing
My great Redeemer’s praise,
The glories of my God and King,
The triumphs of His grace!

My gracious Master and my God,
Assist me to proclaim,
To spread through all the earth abroad
The honors of Thy name.

Jesus! the name that charms our fears,
That bids our sorrows cease;
’Tis music in the sinner’s ears,
’Tis life, and health, and peace.

He breaks the power of canceled sin,
He sets the prisoner free;
His blood can make the foulest clean,
His blood availed for me.

He speaks, and, listening to His voice,
New life the dead receive,
The mournful, broken hearts rejoice,
The humble poor believe.

Hear Him, ye deaf; His praise, ye dumb,
Your loosened tongues employ;
Ye blind, behold your Savior come,
And leap, ye lame, for joy.

In Christ your Head, you then shall know,
Shall feel your sins forgiven;
Anticipate your heaven below,
And own that love is heaven.

Glory to God, and praise and love
Be ever, ever given,
By saints below and saints above,
The church in earth and heaven.

On this glad day the glorious Sun
Of Righteousness arose;
On my benighted soul He shone
And filled it with repose.

Sudden expired the legal strife,
’Twas then I ceased to grieve;
My second, real, living life
I then began to live.

Then with my heart I first believed,
Believed with faith divine,
Power with the Holy Ghost received
To call the Savior mine.

I felt my Lord’s atoning blood
Close to my soul applied;
Me, me He loved, the Son of God,
For me, for me He died!

I found and owned His promise true,
Ascertained of my part,
My pardon passed in heaven I knew
When written on my heart.

Look unto Him, ye nations, own
Your God, ye fallen race;
Look, and be saved through faith alone,
Be justified by grace.

See all your sins on Jesus laid:
The Lamb of God was slain,
His soul was once an offering made
For every soul of man.

Awake from guilty nature’s sleep,
And Christ shall give you light,
Cast all your sins into the deep,
And wash you purest white.

Harlots and publicans and thieves
In holy triumph join!
Saved is the sinner that believes
From crimes as great as mine.

Murderers and all ye hellish crew
In holy triumph join!
Believe the Savior died for you;
For me the Savior died.

With me, your chief, ye then shall know,
Shall feel your sins forgiven;
Anticipate your heaven below,
And own that love is heaven.

Go to Sovereign Grace Music to download “O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing” sung by 5,000 men at the 2008 Together For the Gospel Conference.  It is breathtaking!  [Some of our own men are singing in this congregation!]

Scripture @ Sunrise 2.13.09

“He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son,  in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”  -Colossians 1:13-14

In honor of Valentine’s Day tomorrow, why not focus on a LOVE song that shows the LOVE of our Savior?!

AND CAN IT BE THAT I SHOULD GAIN?

And can it be that I should gain
An interest in the Savior’s blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain—
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

’Tis mystery all: th’Immortal dies:
Who can explore His strange design?
In vain the firstborn seraph tries
To sound the depths of love divine.
’Tis mercy all! Let earth adore,
Let angel minds inquire no more.
’Tis mercy all! Let earth adore;
Let angel minds inquire no more.

He left His Father’s throne above
So free, so infinite His grace—
Emptied Himself of all but love,
And bled for Adam’s helpless race:
’Tis mercy all, immense and free,
For O my God, it found out me!
’Tis mercy all, immense and free,
For O my God, it found out me!

Long my imprisoned spirit lay,
Fast bound in sin and nature’s night;
Thine eye diffused a quickening ray—
I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.

Still the small inward voice I hear,
That whispers all my sins forgiven;
Still the atoning blood is near,
That quenched the wrath of hostile Heaven.
I feel the life His wounds impart;
I feel the Savior in my heart.
I feel the life His wounds impart;
I feel the Savior in my heart.

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.

WORDS: Charles Wesley, 1738
MUSIC: Thomas Campbell, 1825

(A piano solo can sometimes help you focus on the lyrics while you sing them.  Wow!  It adds intensity, I think!)


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Charles Wesley had been raised in the church, attended Oxford, and was in “the ministry” with his brother John. However, he was not at peace. During a time in London, he came to realize that “salvation is by faith alone.” His May 20, 1738 journal entry reads:

At midnight I gave myself to Christ, assured that I was safe, whether sleeping or waking. I had the continual experience of His power to overcome all temptation, and I confessed with joy and surprise that He was able to do exceedingly abundantly for me above what I can ask or think.

He fervently began pouring out his soul in hymns. It is believed that And Can It Be was written 2 days after his conversion. He apparently even dictated a final hymn to his beloved wife from his deathbed.

Sources:
1. Amazing Grace: 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions; Kenneth Osbeck, 2002
2. songsandhymns.org
[from Mocha with Linda]