WHERE WOULD WE BE TODAY WITHOUT GOD’S AMAZING GRACE?
Today My Brothers and Sisters we continue with part 2 of our lesson title: Experience the powers of God’s Amazing Grace. We encourage you to go back and read part 1 again that it may expand your thinking as you begin to read and study part 2 on this most beautiful day
Now, when I look back over my life, I know that it was nothing but God’s amazing grace that brought me through my trials and tribulations, and I am certain you will say the same. This amazing grace comes only from the Lord and is simply the God-given desire and the power to do God’s will.
In order to help us truly appreciate and understand the value that this one song has done to help transform our lives and the lives of people all over the world, let me share with you the history of this great song. Now please take note of this next video because it does provide us with a deep understanding of the History of this song Amazing Grace as this part of the lesson is taught by Dr. Wintley Phipps. We will join you in words once again when Dr. Phipps has concluded.
“Amazing Grace” is a Christian hymn written by English poet and clergyman John Newton (1725–1807), published in 1779. With a message that forgiveness and redemption are possible regardless of the sins people commit and that the soul can be delivered from despair through the mercy of God, “Amazing Grace” is one of the most recognizable songs in the English-speaking world.
Newton wrote the words from personal experience. He grew up without any particular religious conviction but his life’s path was formed by a variety of twists and coincidences that were often put into motion by his recalcitrant insubordination. He was pressed into the Royal Navy and became a sailor, eventually participating in the slave trade. One night a terrible storm battered his vessel so severely that he became frightened enough to call out to God for mercy, a moment that marked the beginning of his spiritual conversion. His career in slave trading lasted a few years more until he quit going to sea altogether and began studying theology.
Ordained in the Church of England in 1764, Newton became curate of Olney, Buckinghamshire, where he began to write hymns with poet William Cowper. “Amazing Grace” was written to illustrate a sermon on New Year’s Day of 1773. It is unknown if there was any music accompanying the verses, and it may have been chanted by the congregation without music. It debuted in print in 1779 in Newton and Cowper’s Olney Hymns, but settled into relative obscurity in England. In the United States however, “Amazing Grace” was used extensively during the Second Great Awakening in the early 19th century. It has been associated with more than 20 melodies, but in 1835 it was joined to a tune named “New Britain” to which it is most frequently sung today.
Author Gilbert Chase writes that “Amazing Grace” is “without a doubt the most famous of all the folk hymns,” and Jonathan Aitken, a Newton biographer, estimates that it is performed about 10 million times annually. It has had particular influence in folk music, and become an emblematic African American spiritual. Its universal message has been a significant factor in its crossover into secular music. “Amazing Grace” saw a resurgence in popularity in the U.S. during the 1960s and has been recorded thousands of times during and since the 20th century, sometimes appearing on popular music charts.
This concludes part 2 of 3, please return tomorrow for the conclusion of this great lesson. We hope that thus far your souls have been blessed with God’s Amazing Grace as He has given it to all of us. Please use this moment and bless someone else with your blessing by sharing this lesson with them. We bless all that you have experienced here today in Jesus name, Amen!