Sunday, 25 February 2018

Zion stands by hills surrounded. The Safety of the Church

Among the seven hundred and sixty-five hymns written by Thomas Kelly is one on the safety of the Church which is worthy of a place in any good hymn book. 

The author, who was a son of an eminent Irish judge, was educated with a view to the law; but through spiritual conviction gave himself to the work of the ministry. With Rowland Hill, because of his earnest evangelical preaching, he was inhibited by the Archbishop of Dublin and compelled to preach in unconsecrated buildings. 

He eventually seceded from the Established Church and erected a number of places of worship in which he conducted worship and preached. This insight into the life of the author will materially increase our appreciation of his hymn in which he sings of the safety of the Church. 


Zion stands with hills surrounded; 

Zion kept by power divine; 
All her foes shall be confounded. 

Though the world in arms combine. 
Happy Zion, 

What a favored lot is thine! 

Every human tie may perish; 

Friend to friend unfaithful prove; 
Mothers cease their own to cherish; 

Heaven and earth at last remove; 
But no changes 

Can attend Jehovah's love. 

In the furnace God may prove thee, 
Thence to bring thee forth more bright, 

But can never cease to love thee; 
Thou art precious in His sight: 

God is with thee, 
God, thine everlasting Light. 


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