Abide with me

We are in the middle of our study of the book of Ruth, we call Steadfast. You can catch-up on the past sermons on the message archives page

We also want to challenge you to read the Old Testament book of Ruth each week.

Reading the book of Ruth reminds of one of the great hymns of our faith. The writer of the text was a pastor in the Church of England, Henry F. Lyte. It is recorded that Pastor Lyte was a man strong in faith but frail in body. His health was continually threatened by asthma and tuberculosis. Despite his physical frailties, he was a tireless worker and had a reputation for being a poet. The hymn text is one of those poems and is based on Luke 24:29. But you can read the poetry and see how the story of Ruth and God’s faithfulness is reflected in these lines:

Abide with me
Abide with me; fast falls the eventide;
The darkness deepens; Lord with me abide.
When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, O abide with me.

Swift to its close ebbs out life's little day;
Earth's joys grow dim; its glories pass away;
Change and decay in all around I see;
O Thou who changest not, abide with me.

Not a brief glance I beg, a passing word,
But as Thou dwell'st with Thy disciples, Lord,
Familiar, condescending, patient, free.
Come not to sojourn, but abide with me.

I need Thy presence every passing hour.
What but Thy grace can foil the tempter's power?
Who, like Thyself, my guide and stay can be?
Through cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me.

I fear no foe, with Thee at hand to bless;
Ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness.
Where is death's sting? Where, grave, thy victory?
I triumph still, if Thou abide with me.

Hold Thou Thy cross before my closing eyes;
Shine through the gloom and point me to the skies.
Heaven's morning breaks, and earth's vain shadows flee;
In life, in death, O Lord, abide with me.
 

If you would like to listen to this hymn, Abide With Me, here is a link to an updated version by the worship leader Tommy Walker.