Posted by: rcottrill | October 19, 2011

To God Be the Glory

Words: Frances Jane (“Fanny”) Crosby (b. Mar. 24, 1820; d. Feb. 12, 1915)
Music: William Howard Doane (b. Feb. 3, 1832; d. Dec. 23, 1915)

Links:
Wordwise Hymns (D. L. Moody; Billy Graham)
The Cyber Hymnal

Note: The Wordwise Hymns links describe the interesting travels of this hymn. Written in America, it was taken to Britain, and promptly forgotten in the land of its birth. Almost a century later, it was rediscovered in Britain, and carried back to America by the Billy Graham team!

CH-1) 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 life gate that all may go in.

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, through Jesus the Son,
And give Him the glory, great things He hath done.

This is a wonderfully joyous song of praise from the pen of Fanny Crosby. To God be glory–the Greek word (doxa), has to do with the revelation of God’s distinctive excellence and, by extension, praising Him for these things.

All that God is and does, and all He has created, reflect glory to Him. “For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever” (Rom. 11:36). And the glory due to Him will extend through all eternity, “to whom be glory forever and ever” (Gal. 1:5; cf. Phil. 4:20).

The infinite wisdom God has shown, and will forever demonstrate, in doing things as He has, is also forever glorious. “To God our Saviour, who alone is wise, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever” (Jude 1:25; cf. Rom. 16:27). One way this is clearly demonstrated is in the church of Jesus Christ. “To Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen” (Eph. 3:21; cf. vs. 10).

To God belongs eternal glory for His preservation of the saints, and for their coming exaltation. As the Apostle Paul puts it, “The Lord will deliver me from every evil work and preserve me for His heavenly kingdom. To Him be glory forever and ever” (II Tim. 4:18). And in eternity we’ll praise Him because He “has made us kings and priests to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen” Rev. 1:6).

The root and superabundant Source of all that God has done and will yet do for us fallen human beings is made possible by the saving work of His Son. That is the central theme of Fanny Crosby’s song of praise. She exalts the Lord because the multiplied blessings of salvation are “through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever” (Heb. 13:21).

CH-2) O perfect redemption, the purchase of blood,
To every believer the promise of God;
The vilest offender who truly believes,
That moment from Jesus a pardon receives.

In CH-3, as in a number of her songs, Fanny Crosby rejoiced to think that one day she would see her Saviour face to face. This is all the more poignant and meaningful since she was blind, and spent most of her life in darkness. She praised the Lord that His face would be the first she’d see.

CH-3) Great things He has taught us, great things He has done,
And great our rejoicing through Jesus the Son;
But purer, and higher, and greater will be
Our wonder, our transport, when Jesus we see.

Questions:
1) If you had only one aspect or blessing of your salvation for which you could praise the Lord, what would it be?

2) No one is too wicked to be saved by God’s grace, through faith. Even “the vilest offender” can come to God. But on the other hand, no one is too good not to need saving. Explain.

Links:
Wordwise Hymns (D. L. Moody; Billy Graham)
The Cyber Hymnal


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