Christ Will Hold Me Fast – This life is full of forces that seek to undermine our faith. The enemy prowls about like a lion, the flesh makes war on our souls, and the world offers idols to capture our affections. In fact, all who desire to live a holy life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted (2 Tim. 3:12). With this attack, how can we keep our faith?

The underlying truth is that the object of our faith clings firmly to us. We don’t often use the word “fast” in this way, but we think of it as the root of the word “stick.” In this light, fast means “firmly fixed or attached.” Is this the exact picture we see in John 10 when Jesus says that no one can snatch his sheep out of his hand? Although our fingers are often weak, easily removed from what we grasp, as we persevere in life, remember that Christ will hold us and not let us go!

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Christ Will Hold Me Fast

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This song has an upbeat tone of victory, Christ’s victory over sin and death on the cross, and our victory in him!

Chorus The cross is my only plea The blood he shed delivers me The arms of our Savior are wide open A love so great the cross of Christ

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Ever since I first heard this song, verse 5 has been etched in my memory. With such simple words he bridged the abyss of the misery of my sin and the blessing of my salvation.

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This notion of being worthy and unworthy seems like a contradiction at first. However, the cross is where it all makes sense! According to 2 Cor. 5:21, when Christ bears our sin on the cross, we are wrapped in His righteousness and are worthy in God’s sight. However, the truth is that because of our sin we are not worthy to receive such a precious gift. This is the wonder of the Gospel!

Standing before the cross we see simultaneously our value and our unworthiness, as we perceive both the greatness of his love in dying, and the greatness of our sin in causing him to die.

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The cross breaks to pieces both pride and depression, both self-exaltation and self-deprecation. The cross humbles us and lifts us up. The cross is the justice and love of God united in Christ. Let us confess these wonders together as we sing this song in the face of Easter.

Heart I rejoice in my Redeemer My soul’s greatest source of treasure I will trust in Him no other My soul is satisfied in Him alone. This hymn of devotion has its roots in three continents. The story begins with the American evangelist R.A. Torrey (1856–1928) and his musical director, Charles Alexander (1867–1920), who were touring Australia in 1902 when they met a young pianist, Robert Harkness (1880–1961).

Christ Will Hold Me Fast By Olivia Hollis On Dribbble

Dr. Torrey and Mr. Alexander came to my hometown of Bendigo in June. Before his coming, a committee of the Mission came to me and asked me if I would help out at the meetings by playing the piano part of the time. I am not interested in evangelistic meetings; indeed, I was rather opposed to it, but I was struck with the idea that perhaps my good father and mother would be pleased if I took part in these meetings, and I consented. I hadn’t been into the first meeting ten minutes before I discovered it was going to be decidedly hot, much warmer than I expected.

Mr. Alexander announced hymn no. 7, and soon I played a two-line hymn, with an old Southern tune. I wasn’t very interested and played it in a wild way. On playing the “Song of Glory,” when I got to the heart, I closed the book; I had quickly memorized it and improvised an accompaniment to the chorus to try to displease Mr. Alexandre; but instead of displeasing him, he turned and looked at me and said, “Go on. Keep it up. That’s what we want.’ So I continued. The next time we had the choir I played a full octave accompaniment, thinking he would probably be upset, but I wasn’t there to be upset. At the end of the meeting, the Dr. Torrey asked me if I was a Christian. I got up and said, “No, I’m here to play the piano.” Dr. Torrey left me and went to pray for me, I think.[1]

After this experience, Alexander challenged Harkness to accept Christ. Harkness, moved by Alexander’s genuine concern for his spiritual well-being, agreed. In addition, Alexander was so impressed by Harkness’ skills that he employed the young man in his touring band, forming a partnership that lasted several years.

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After their work in Australia, the team traveled to Tasmania, New Zealand and India before moving their efforts to the British Isles. In 1905, while in London, towards the end of their campaign, the team came into contact with the singer Ada Habershon (1861–1918), resulting in their first collaborative composition:

He Will Hold Me Fast (free Chart) — Tommy Walker Ministries

A few days before the movement ended in the Strand, a new gospel song was added to Mr. Alexander, who achieved instant popularity. It was titled, “Oh, what a change!” and was written by a lady already well known for her sacred verse, Miss Ada R. Habershon. She was a campaign worker and heard Dr. Torrey speak one afternoon on “The Second Coming of Christ.” She was greatly impressed by the Doctor’s words, and on returning home wrote the beautiful verses of the hymn. … Shortly after, Miss Habershon delivered the lines to Mr. Harkness with the request that he would put music on them. During Dr. Torrey’s sermon one night, while the pianist was scanning the lines, he had an inspiration and, taking a piece of paper from his pocket, wrote down the melody. The hymn was promptly printed as originally written, without any alteration, and delighted all who were privileged to hear it. During the last days of the campaign the Strand was sung on average at least once at each meeting.[2]

By early 1906, the team was in Toronto, Canada. According to one account, Harkness had met a young convert there, who “expressed a fear that he could not resist”, [3] so he wrote to Habershon in England to request more texts to address this feeling. Harkness later described how Habershon’s response came after the team had moved its work to Philadelphia:

It was the year 1906, during the Mission in Philadelphia. I remember Dr. Torrey was preaching to about 4000 people in the Armory. During one sermon I took out some slips of paper with some words that Miss Habershon had sent in response to a request for some verses on keeping the power of Christ. I read along the lines of “He’ll hold me”; the melody came to me, and I worked on it there and then, writing the music for the verses and the chorus.[4]

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The following summer, 1907, the song was presented at the Moody Bible Conference in Northfield, Massachusetts. One journalist described how this song “captivated everyone…and was sung and whistled throughout the venue”.[5]

Hymn 423. 나의 믿음 약할 때 (when I Fear My Faith Will Fail)

In the spring of 1908, Charles Alexander returned to Philadelphia with evangelist J. Wilbur Chapman (1859–1918) and later gave this testimony regarding the song’s impact:

During our mission in Philadelphia last spring, Dr. Charles W. Gordon called me through the waiting room of the hotel where we were staying and introduced me to a fine-looking young man and told me about this history … His face lit up as he told us how he had been at our meeting a few days earlier and had been converted. When I questioned him, I found that he had been in the dark and felt that he was too weak to live a Christian life. He was in the meeting when I was leading the people to the song “He will hold me fast,” and he said that was the message he needed. The thought that Christ could bear him, and that he need not depend on his own will-power, or on his own strength, was the means of his decision for Christ.[6]

Just a few weeks after the Philadelphia Crusade, Chapman and Alexander (and probably Harkness) were leading a crusade in Kansas City. One journalist described how “He’ll hold me” was the highlight of the experience:

The climax of the song service came when Mr. Alexander joined the choir and the audience (6,000 people) in singing the new anthem of Mr. Harkness, “He will hold me fast.” The people were electrified by the great volume of the melody, such as had probably never been heard in the building before, and by the thought of Christ holding us in the midst of all the temptations and trials of life.[7]

He Will Hold Me Fast — By Robert Harkness

“He will

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