Fourth in a series of articles: a new Ecumenical Catechism. This is another hymn to go with the Introduction.

A Wonderful Savior is Jesus My Lord (He Hideth My Soul in the Cleft of the Rock), an American hymn by Fanny Crosby, goes with the Introduction of a new Ecumenical Catechism.

Born in Brewster, New York in 1820, Fanny Crosby was blinded as an infant due to a doctor’s error treating an eye infection.  Her father died when she was only a year old. Her mother, Mercy Crosby, worked as a maid while Fanny’s grandmother Eunice cared for her, describing sunsets and other beautiful sights of God’s creation to her. When she was fourteen, Fanny moved to New York City to study at the The New York Institute for the Blind, where she later became a teacher.

Fanny considered her blindness a blessing, not the curse many would be tempted to call it. She once said, “It seemed intended by the blessed providence of God that I should be blind all my life, and I thank him for the dispensation. If perfect earthly sight were offered me tomorrow I would not accept it. I might not have sung hymns to the praise of God if I had been distracted by the beautiful and interesting things about me.”

She was eventually known as America’s Hymn Queen, just as Johann Strauss was the “Waltz King” and John Philip Sousa the “March King.” She wrote her first hymn in her forties and wrote nearly 9,000! She lived until the age of 94, often saying, “When I get to heaven, the first face that shall ever gladden my sight will be that of my Savior!” Her biography is inspiring; it’s worth taking a few minutes to read this article about her life.

It was difficult to pick a hymn, since Crosby wrote so many wonderful ones. “All the Way my Savior Leads Me,” “Jesus Keep Me Near the Cross,” and “Redeemed, How I Love to Proclaim It!” were possibilities. “Blessed Assurance, Jesus is Mine! is probably the best known, her personal testimony.

I chose A Wonderful Savior is Jesus My Lord (He Hideth My Soul in the Cleft of the Rock) because of its theology, alluding to the Old Testament prophet Moses hiding in the cleft of the rock while the LORD’s glory passed by.  

Here are the lyrics:

A wonderful Savior is Jesus my Lord,

A wonderful Savior to me;

He hideth my soul in the cleft of the rock,

Where rivers of pleasure I see.

Chorus: He hideth my soul in the cleft of the rock

That shadows a dry, thirsty land;

He hideth my life in the depths of His love,

And covers me there with His hand,

And covers me there with His hand.

  1. A wonderful Savior is Jesus my Lord,

He taketh my burden away;

He holdeth me up and I shall not be moved,

He giveth me strength as my day.

  1. With numberless blessings each moment He crowns,

And, filled with His fulness divine,

I sing in my rapture, oh, glory to God,

For such a Redeemer as mine!

  1. When clothed in His brightness, transported I rise

To meet Him in clouds of the sky,

His perfect salvation, His wonderful love,

I’ll shout with the millions on high.

The music was written by William James Kirkpatrick in C major; the meter is plus the chorus.

Discussion questions for second session:

  1. What did you think of the introduction?
  2. If you are in a workplace study group, how do you interact with those who hold differing views? How does a person’s theology impact your particular line of work?
  3. Do you have to believe in a literal account of Genesis 1-3 to accept the Fall of man?
  4. How does this reconcile with theistic evolution, or is it incompatible?
  5. Do you accept original sin from your observations of people and their behavior from early childhood? If not, do you accept that you are a sinner?
  6. As you take prayer requests for members of your study group, remember to pray for leaders in your workplace, other churches, and government leaders of all nations.

For another hymn that goes with the Introduction to the Ecumenical Catechism and the history behind the hymn, click on Praise to the Lord, the Almighty.

A second hymn with its history and a great picture of the August 21, 2017 solar eclipse can be found at This is My Father’s World.

For biographies of the authors of the Ecumenical Catechism, click here.
Permission is granted to copy this catechism and italicized comments in its entirety for non-commercial purposes. The copyright on the original 1641 catechism has obviously long since expired. Some minor rewording of the 1959 edition cited above was done.

Dale Murrish
Troy, Michigan
Copyright 2005, 2017 by Dale Murrish. All rights reserved except as noted above.
Version 3.97, August, 2017
Other articles
Please check out The Michigan Declaration and consider signing it.

In previous blog posts, I began telling the story of my brain tumor and the depression which followed it. The second article in the series described my faith in God which sustained me through both trials.
Having recently started a word-by-word translation of Martin Luther’s Bible from German to English, I introduced the project and published Matthew Chapter 1 . Later I wrote commentary on it; my church background and theological training is in my USA Melting Pot bio.
Dale Murrish writes on historytraveltechnologyreligion and politics for the USA Melting Pot club, LinkedIn, and Troy Patch. You can help this non-profit club by making your Amazon purchases through the link on the left side of their website. You can also see over a dozen ethnic presentations from people with firsthand knowledge under Culture & Country (right hand side), and outdoor presentations (Hobby & Fun), including posts on bicycling, skiing and camping.
Other interesting articles on the USA Melting Pot website have been written by Bilal Rathur on his hajj to Saudi Arabia (Part 6) and by Carl Petersen. Thanks to both of them for their contributions.