Tuesday Hymns: “Christ, of All My Hopes the Ground”

Ralph Wardlaw was a Scottish minister who ministered during the early nineteenth century in Glasgow. Although he came from solid Presbyterian stock (his mother was the daughter of James Fisher and the granddaughter of Ebenezer Erskine) he was influenced by Greville Ewing and became an independent Congregationalist. He founded the first academy for Congregationalist theology students in the city of Glasgow, and is the author of our Tuesday Hymn of the Week, Christ, of All My Hopes the Ground.

This hymn follows the work of grace in the life of a Christian from his justification (verse 1), to his sanctification (verses 2-3), to his glorification (verses 4-5). It is a wonderful reminder to all of God’s children that salvation is grounded in Christ and what He has accomplished, and not in what they might do since “we know that a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, so we also have believed in Christ Jesus, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law, because by works of the law no one will be justified.” (Galatians 2:16)

It is normally sung to the familiar hymn tune, HENDON.

Christ, of all my hopes the ground,
Christ, the spring of all my joy,
Still in thee may I be found,
Still for thee my pow’rs employ.

Let thy love my heart inflame;
Keep thy fear before my sight;
Be thy praise my highest aim;
Be thy smile my chief delight.

Fountain of o’erflowing grace,
Freely from thy fullness give;
Till I close my earthly race,
May I prove it “Christ to live.”

Firmly trusting in thy blood,
Nothing shall my heart confound;
Safely I shall pass the flood,
Safely reach Immanuel’s ground.

Thus, O thus, an entrance give
To the land of cloudless sky;
Having known it “Christ to live,”
Let me know it “gain to die.”

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