Devoted to sharing the Word of God - in uplifting, informative and encouraging posts.
" It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life." John 6:63

Tuesday 15 January 2019

Wonderful Words of Life - Philip Bliss, Biograph

This new blog is another learning curve. I wasn’t sure what the LORD was doing when I started this blog!
Knew it was to share the word of God with as many as able; the format was hazy. After prayer and thought I believe this is good balance:
** one post on LORD’s day will be deeper, a Devotional Bible study of some sort. 
As I’m in Oz it will probably publish on your Saturday in Europe or US.
** second post about mid week will be a shorter or easier to read post.
A hymn background or short biography for uplifting encouragement. Love the way biographies can help us refocus! That’s why I read a dozen of them for one novel. Novels may be good BUT you can’t beat real life stories from those who've gone before. 

Philip Bliss. Hymn writer - his background is taken from this post here!*
The composer and writer of the hymn (& title of this blog), “Wonderful Words of life” was Philip Bliss.  He wrote many hymns, composed the music to many more, yet his time of writing was very short. Rather like the Apostle Stephen his life was cut off prematurely to our limited, human eye.

Wonderful Words of Life”*
“Lord, to whom shall we go?  Thou hast the words of eternal life” (John 6:68)                       
INTRO.:  A song which mentions the blessings that we can find in God’s word of life is “Wonderful Words of Life” The text was written and the tune (Words of Life) was composed both by Philip Paul Bliss, who was born in a log cabin near Rome in Clearfield County, PA, on July 9, 1838. He had a limited access to musical training but by using every opportunity God brought his way and much hard work he aquired good training.
He rode about rural Pennsylvania as a professional music teacher, conducting singing schools in the winter and continuing his own music education during the summers at the Normal Academy of Music at Geneseo, NY.  
Wanting to write hymns, his association with two Chicago evangelists caused him to give up his music teaching and to begin composing gospel songs for their crusades.  One of these evangelists was Dwight L. Moody, and the other, for whom Bliss became music director, was Daniel Webster Whittle.  Over the next eight years, Bliss became one of the foremost gospel musicians in the nation.  He wrote “Let the Lower Lights Be Burning.”  “Hold the Fort." “Almost Persuaded” et al.  Furnishing many songs for various collections of others, he went on to publish several hymnbooks of his own.  Some of his other well-known hymns “Hallelujah! What A Savior!”, “More Holiness Give Me,” “Whosoever Will,” “Once For All,” Hallelujah, ‘Tis Done,” “Dare to Be a Daniel,” “The Light of the World is Jesus,” and “Jesus Loves Even Me;”; tunes for Francis R. Havergal’s “I Gave My Life For Thee” and “I Bring My Sins to Thee,” Emily Oakley’s “What Shall the Harvest Be?”, Mary Brainard’s “He Knows,” and Horatio G. Spafford’s “It Is Well With My Soul;” and the text for “My Redeemer” with music provided by James G. McGranahan.

While at age 25 Bliss had been an impoverished music teacher making only $13 a month, by 36 he was earning a fortune with his royalties being counted in the tens of thousands of dollars, although he gave much of it away to charity.
Sketch of Philip Bliss.

 “Wonderful Words of Life” was produced in 1874 for the first issue of a religious paper named Words of Life, published by Fleming H. Revell in New York City, NY. 
Two years later, in 1876, after a grueling autumn or fall schedule, Mr. and Mrs. Bliss spent the Christmas holiday with their family in Rome, PA.  Leaving the children with relatives in Rome, they left for Chicago and an engagement at Moody’s tabernacle.  On Dec. 29, while they were riding their Chicago-bound express through Ohio, the bridge over a ravine near Ashtabula gave way, and seven cars crashed through the trestle.  They plunged into the icy riverbed below and burst into flame.  Bliss, just 38 years old at the time, survived the fall, escaped through a window, and crawled from the wreckage.  However, when he did not see his wife, he fought his way back through the fire into the burning mass in a vain effort to locate and rescue her.  Both of them perished in the flames, along with a hundred other people.    This song had its first hymnbook appearance in the 1878 Gospel Hymns No. 3.
     1. Sing them over again to me,
wonderful words of life;
let me more of their beauty see,
wonderful words of life;
words of life and beauty
teach me faith and duty.
Beautiful words, wonderful words,
wonderful words of life.
Beautiful words, wonderful words,
wonderful words of life.

2. Christ, the blessed one, gives to all
wonderful words of life;
sinner, list to the loving call,
wonderful words of life;
all so freely given,
wooing us to heaven.

3. Sweetly echo the gospel call,
wonderful words of life;
offer pardon and peace to all,
wonderful words of life;
Jesus, only Savior,
sanctify forever.
I've greatly enjoyed the reading of Phillip Bliss' life. Just imagine chatting in heaven or even better singing in heaven! 
For fuller details use two links above marked with *.
Many thanks for taking the time to read this. 
Any feedback in respect to what you'd like to see is appreciated, and will be considered prayerfully.
Hugs Shaz in Oz.x
* these both contain links to resources used. 
PS. If this has blessed you I'd love it if you would join as a wonderful encourager of this blog ...  link HERE. 
Thank YOU to those who have done so already. You really encourage me to keep on! 💕
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Thank YOU. 😊


Sunshine Country said...

Will be praying for you to have wisdom in each of your posts on here. I've already been blessed by it, and look forward to keeping up with reading more! What blesses me most, is always God's WORD -- "Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and Thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: ..." No matter how simple the thoughts shared along with it, even just one verse at times can be such an encouragement to meditate on for that day. And I do love the old Gospel hymns as well.

Claire said...

He's not anyone Ive heard of, so an interesting read, thank you!
Popped over from your WOYWW post :) x

Conniecrafter said...

It is always interesting to hear of the lives of those that gave such a great deal to praising God or the sharing of his word. So sad when they die young, and you wonder why God takes them that young too, when they were doing such great things for him.

ShazInOzCardsCalligraphy said...

God sees what we cannot. His ways are always wise and best as Romans 8:28 says, all things.. ALL THINGS work together for good to them that love God, who are The Called according to HIS purpose.
I guess simply put its faith to trust God knows best. Thanks Connie ... Xxxx

Anne said...

Love your post Sis. So good to learn about others in Christ who have made an impact for the Gospel! Thank you!

Mehrll said...

I love the song. Many of the songwriters have suffered hardship or tragedy and it brings out the songs that God gives those who suffer. He is our wonderful strength through every trial and test. sad that Phillip Bliss's life ended so soon. Thanks for sharing this. Hugs.