Frances R. Havergal, 1836-1879

And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.
Joshua 24:15

As Christians, we are to take our places in God's army and not be ashamed to be counted as one of His. Believers are too often content to sit on the sidelines and merely observe the spectacle. The work of the Gospel, inviting individuals to be personally reconciled with God through faith in Jesus, is an urgent task, not a spectator sport. It demands our whole-hearted, zealous involvement.

Miss Havergal, authoress of this powerful hymn text, was known as the "consecration poet". Her entire life was characterized by simple faith and spiritual saintliness. In spite of frail health, she lived an active life until her death at the age of 43. On her tombstone was the Scripture verse she claimed as her own:

The blood of Jesus Christ cleanseth us from all sin.
I John 1:7.

She wrote many beautifully phrased hymn texts, including "Take My Life and Let It Be", I Gave My Life for Thee", and "Like a River Glorious".

This militant hymn text by Frances Havergal was originally titled "Home Missions" and was written in October of 1877. It was based on the Scripture setting in I Chronicles 12:1-18, where a very select group of soldiers was preparing to join King David in warfare against the enemy. The poem later appeared in Loyal Responses, published by the author in 1878. "Who Is on the Lord's Side?" has been used for more than a century to challenge Christians to make a definite commitment to follow Christ in spiritual warfare.

Who is on the Lordís side? Who will serve the King?
Who will be His helpers, other lives to bring?
Who will leave the worldís side? Who will face the foe?
Who is on the Lordís side? Who for Him will go?
By Thy call of mercy, by Thy grace divine,
We are on the Lordís sideóSavior, we are Thine!

Not for weight of glory, nor for crown and palm,
Enter we the army, raise the warrior psalm;
But for love that claimeth lives for whom He died:
He whom Jesus nameth must be on His side.
By Thy love constraining, by Thy grace divine,
We are on the Lordís sideóSavior, we are Thine!

Jesus, Thou hast bought us, not with gold or gem,
But with Thine own life blood, for Thy diadem;
With Thy blessing filling each who comes to Thee,
Thou hast made us willing, Thou hast made us free.
By Thy grand redemption, by Thy grace divine,
We are on the Lordís sideóSavior, we are Thine!

Fierce may be the conflict, strong may be the foe,
But the Kingís own army none can overthrow;
íRound His standard ranging, victory is secure,
For His truth unchanging makes the triumph sure.
Joyfully enlisting, by Thy grace divine,
We are on the Lordís sideóSavior, we are Thine!

*For Today*: I Chronicles 12:1-18; Mark 8:24-38; II Corinthians 5:11; I Timothy 6:12

Determine to do or say something to a non-Christian that publicly identifies you as a follower/soldier of Christ!

Music url: The Cyber Hymnal

Taken from Amazing Grace -- 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions © Copyright 1990 by Kenneth W. Osbeck. Published by Kregel Publications, Grand Rapids, MI. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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