"Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing" is a much-loved hymn that's been sung by Christians for ages. Its beautiful melody and deep lyrics have touched the hearts of many, making it one of the most popular hymns in Christian worship. In this blog post, we'll look at the fascinating story behind "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing", the profound message conveyed in each verse, the importance of engaging our minds in worship, and the personal story of its author, Robert Robinson.
Singing the hymn "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing" in worship for years, I always loved its beautiful melody. However, one Sunday as I began to sing the lyrics, I realized that there were words I didn't fully understand. What did it mean to raise my Ebenezer or to have goodness bind my wandering heart like a fetter? It left me feeling somewhat disconnected from the depth of the hymn's meaning.
Curiosity and a desire to dig deeper caused me to seek the definitions of these words. I discovered that an Ebenezer symbolizes a stone of remembrance, representing God's faithfulness throughout history. A fetter is a chain or restraint that binds. Understanding these definitions brought a new level of richness to the hymn's lyrics, allowing me to connect more deeply with the message the author was trying to convey. It reminded me of the importance of being aware of what we sing in worship, not just blindly following along, but engaging our minds and actually knowing the profound truths we sing to our God.
"Come, thou Fount of every blessing,
Tune my heart to sing thy grace;
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
Call for songs of loudest praise."
In this opening verse, we find the author recognized God as the source of all blessings. The streams of mercy that never cease invite us to respond with songs of the loudest praise, expressing our gratitude and awe for God's abundant grace in our lives.
"Teach me some melodious sonnet,
Sung by flaming tongues above;
Praise the mount! I'm fixed upon it,
Mount of thy redeeming love."
As I looked into the meaning of the lyrics, I discovered that the "mount" symbolizes Calvary, where Christ's redeeming love was demonstrated through His sacrifice. This verse invites you to fix your gaze upon God's love, to learn from the melodious songs sung by heavenly beings, and to join in praising the mount of His redeeming love.
"Here I raise my Ebenezer;
Hither by thy help I'm come;
And I hope, by thy good pleasure,
Safely to arrive at home."
Knowing the reference to raising an Ebenezer causes you to reflect on your own personal journey of experiencing God's faithfulness. With each milestone and testimony, we can acknowledge God's guidance and provision. The lyrics continue to resonate as we sing in hopefulness that by God's good pleasure, we will safely arrive at our eternal home. It reminds me that faith is a journey, and in every step, we raise our own Ebenezers, acknowledging the faithfulness of God in our lives.
"Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wandering from the fold of God;
He, to rescue me from danger,
Interposed His precious blood."
The lyrics of this verse took on a new meaning as I reflected on my own moments of doubt and uncertainty and how Jesus sought me even when I was a stranger, wandering away from the fold of God. The realization that He willingly interposed His precious blood to rescue me from danger fills me with awe and gratitude. It reminds me that even in my weakest moments, Jesus never gives up on me. His relentless pursuit and sacrificial love are the foundations of my faith and the reason I persevere.
"O to grace how great a debtor
daily I’m constrained to be!
Let that grace now, like a fetter,
bind my wandering heart to thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
prone to leave the God I love;
here’s my heart; O take and seal it;
seal it for thy courts above."
As we come to the last verse I am reminded of my own sinfulness and wandering heart. I am such a debtor to God's grace, and it is in His goodness, like a comforting fetter, that my wandering heart finds comfort and is bound to Him.
This imagery of God binding our wandering hearts to Himself reminds me of His unwavering love and faithfulness. It speaks of His desire to sanctify us and conform us into the image of Christ. In those moments when doubt or distraction seek to lead me astray, I find comfort in knowing that His faithfulness will prevail, anchoring my heart to Him and guiding me safely along my journey of faith. My salvation is not based on how I feel. My salvation is based on the character of God and His faithfulness in spite of my feelings and failings.
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9
Through this last verse, we see the author pen a prayer asking God to seal his heart. It invites us to surrender our wandering hearts, finding comfort and steadfastness in His unfailing presence.
One interesting aspects of "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing" is the personal story of its author, Robert Robinson. Robinson, an English pastor who lived in the 18th century, experienced a difficult childhood and grew up in poverty. However, he eventually found his way to faith and became a minister.
During his time as a pastor, Robinson wrote the words to "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing." The hymn was first published in 1758 in a collection of hymns called "A Collection of Hymns for Public Worship." The melody that is now associated with the hymn was added a few years later by composer John Wyeth.
Despite writing such a beautiful hymn, Robinson's own journey was marked by seasons of doubt and unbelief. At one point in his life, he even walked away from his faith altogether. However, he eventually returned to God and found peace and reconciliation. This personal struggle adds an even deeper layer of meaning to the hymn. It speaks of the profound truth that even those who have wrestled with doubt can find peace and renewal in their relationship with God.
As we sing "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing," let us remember the importance of engaging our minds in worship. May we not simply sing the words, but immerse ourselves in their meaning.
My heart behind offering these hand lettered hymn boards of "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing" is to place these timeless truths in your home and cause you to reflect on the depth of God's mercy, the power of Christ's redeeming love, and our daily dependence on His grace. The lyrics were so good I even have two different versions of the hymn board.
"Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing" continues to be a timeless anthem of worship, touching the hearts and souls of believers throughout history. Its melody and lyrics have the power to draw us closer to God, inviting us into a deeper understanding of His love and faithfulness. May this hymn be a source of inspiration and a reminder of the transformative journey from doubt to worship as we sing with reverence and gratitude to the fount of every blessing.