William How, 1823-1897

Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
Hebrews 12:1

Because of the Catholic tradition of praying to people -- saints and Mary the mother of Jesus the Messiah -- instead of praying to God alone, many believers miss the blessing of remembering those who have gone on to Heaven before us. While we should not pray to human beings as intercessors--For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, I Timothy 2:5--we can and should remember them. Here are some lessons on saints:

Every believer whom God has called by His grace and sanctified by His Spirit is a "saint". (All the redeemed!)
We should have a thankful spirit for the memories of those believers from our local church who were called to their heavenly Home during the past year.
Then, for many of us, there has often been one particular individual who has especially influenced our lives--directing us to God, tutoring us in Truth, and modeling the virtues of the Christian life.

William W. How wrote the text of "For All the Saints" in 1864. This hymn was written especially in honor of those saints who have gone on to Glory--"who from their labors rest". How do we best honor the memory of loved ones and friends who have contributed to our lives? By rededicating our own life to God, obeying Him implicitly, and reaching out to the needs of others.

For all the saints, who from their labors rest,
Who Thee by faith before the world confessed,
Thy Name, O Jesus, be forever blessed.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

Thou wast their Rock, their Fortress and their Might;
Thou, Lord, their Captain in the well fought fight;
Thou, in the darkness drear, their one true Light.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

For the Apostles’ glorious company,
Who bearing forth the Cross o’er land and sea,
Shook all the mighty world, we sing to Thee:
Alleluia, Alleluia!

For the Evangelists, by whose blest word,
Like fourfold streams, the garden of the Lord,
Is fair and fruitful, be Thy Name adored.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

For Martyrs, who with rapture kindled eye,
Saw the bright crown descending from the sky,
And seeing, grasped it, Thee we glorify.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

O blest communion, fellowship divine!
We feebly struggle, they in Glory shine;
All are one in Thee, for all are Thine.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

O may Thy soldiers, faithful, true and bold,
Fight as the saints who nobly fought of old,
And win with them the victor’s crown of gold.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

And when the strife is fierce, the warfare long,
Steals on the ear the distant triumph song,
And hearts are brave, again, and arms are strong.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

The golden evening brightens in the west;
Soon, soon to faithful warriors comes their rest;
Sweet is the calm of Paradise the blessed.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

But lo! there breaks a yet more glorious day;
The saints triumphant rise in bright array;
The King of Glory passes on His way.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

From Earth’s wide bounds, from ocean’s farthest coast,
Through gates of pearl streams in the countless host,
And singing to Father, Son, and Holy Ghost:
Alleluia, Alleluia!

*For Today*: Psalm 22:4 & 5; I Thessalonians 4:13-17; Revelation 6:11, 7:9

Recall the various brothers and sisters in Christ who have especially influenced your life for God. Breathe a prayer of thanks for their dedication to God.

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.

Return to Hymn Devotionals Index

Caleb's Country Corner *_*

The Christian Counter