Monday, June 13, 2016

Thy Mercy, My God

Recently, I was reading through some songs in my hymnbook (my beautiful Hymns for the Little Flock published in 1881 with just words and no music) when a hymn struck me as familiar.
Thy mercy, O God, is the theme of my song,
The joy of my heart. and the boast of my tongue;
'Tis free grace alone, from the first to the last,
That wins my affections, and binds my soul fast.
It was just one verse and I read it over and over trying to place it when I realized that I had heard it sung by Caedmon's Call.  Wait... what?!?!  Caedmon's Call sang this old hymn.  When I later looked into the hymn I found it was first published by John Stocker in 1776 in England.  Yes... the year the Declaration of Independence was signed.  John Stocker was a friend of A.M. Toplady who wrote Rock of Ages.  Sandra McCracken, founding contributor to Indelible Grace (a "re-tuned hymn" movement), rewrote the music to this more-than-200-year-old hymn in 2001.  Caedmon's Call (and many others) also sang Sandra McCracken's song.

In case you haven't noticed, I love "refurbished" old hymns.  Not that I don't like original versions of old hymns, but sometimes new music breathes new life into old words.  If those old words are based on the truth of the Bible, the result can be very powerful.

Here is Sandra McCracken's version of this hymn:






Thy Mercy, My God Is the Theme of My Song

Thy mercy, my God, is the theme of my song,
The joy of my heart. and the boast of my tongue;
Thy free grace alone, from the first to the last,
Hath won my affections, and bound my soul fast.
Psalm 59:16  But I will sing of thy power; yea, I will sing aloud of thy mercy in the morning: for thou hast been my defence and refuge in the day of my trouble.
Without Thy sweet mercy I could not live here;
Sin would reduce me to utter despair;
But, through Thy free goodness, my spirits revive,
And He that first made me still keeps me alive.
Psalm 109:21 WYC And thou, Lord God, do with me for thy name; for thy mercy is sweet. Deliver thou me,
Psalm 30:3  O LORD, thou hast brought up my soul from the grave: thou hast kept me alive, that I should not go down to the pit.
Whene’er I mistake, Thy kind mercy begins
To melt me, and then I can mourn for my sins;
And, led by Thy Spirit to Jesus’s blood,
My sorrows are dired and my strength is renew’d
Romans 2:4 Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?
Thy mercy is more than a match for my heart,
Which wonders to feel its own hardness depart;
Dissolved by Thy goodness, I fall to the ground,
And weep to the praise of the mercy I’ve found.
Psalm 106:1 Praise ye the LORD. O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.
Thy mercy is endless, most tender and free;
No sinner need doubt, since ’tis given to me;
No merit will buy it, nor sin stop its course;
Good works are the fruits of its freeness and force.
Psalm 57:10 For thy mercy is great unto the heavens, and thy truth unto the clouds.
1 Timothy 1:16  Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting.
Titus 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;
Romans 9:15 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.
The doors of Thy mercy are open all day
To the poor and the needy who knock by the way;
But those that bring cash in the mouth of their sack;
The rich and the proud, shall be empty sent back.
Ephesians 2:8-10 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.  For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
Dear Father, Thy merciful word I my all;
Thy promise supports me when ready to fall;
When enemies crowd, to cause doubt and despair,
I conquer them all by the spirit of prayer.
Psalm 31:7  I will be glad and rejoice in thy mercy: for thou hast considered my trouble; thou hast known my soul in adversities;
Lamentations 3:22-23  It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.
Thy mercy, in Jesus, exempts me from hell;
Of Thy mercy I’ll sing, of Thy mercy I’ll tell;
‘Twas Jesus, my Friend, when He hung on the tree,
That open’d the channel of mercy for me.
Psalm 86:13 For great is thy mercy toward me: and thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest hell.
1 Peter 1:3 NAS  Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
Ephesians 2:4-6 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:
Great Father of mercies, Thy goodness I own,
And the covenant love of Thy crucified Son;
All praise to the Spirit, Whose whisper divine
Seals mercy, and pardon, and righteousness mine.
Ephesians 1:13-14 NAS In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation - having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God's own possession, to the praise of His glory.


All Bible verses for this hymn are quoted in KJV unless otherwise noted.


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