The Loving Saviour Found Me Upon the Mountain Cold

“For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost. How think ye? if a man have an hundred sheep, and one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray? And if so be that he find it, verily I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray.” Matthew 18:11-13 (KJV)

The parable of the lost sheep is one of almost 30 parables of Jesus recorded in the synoptic gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke). This hymn by Judson W. Van De Venter dwells on the blessed truth that Jesus came to save sinners. “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8) When we were lost in a wilderness and wandering in the world without hope (Ephesians 2:12-13) Jesus not only sought us when we were rebels against Him, but took us to Himself and gave us eternal life when we believed in Him who shed His blood for us on the cross. (John 3:16-17)

 

The Loving Saviour Found Me Upon the Mountain Cold

by Judson W. Van De Venter *

The loving Saviour found me

Upon the mountain cold;

He threw his arms around me,

And brought me to the fold.

His love he freely gave me,

His precious blood applied;

He did it all to save me,

And I am satisfied.

Refrain

I’m satisfied, satisfied,

I’m satisfied with Jesus, the One who died for me;

I’m satisfied, satisfied,

I’m satisfied with Jesus, for he makes me free.

The Saviour lingered near me

When on the mountain wild;

When others seemed to fear me,

He owned me for his child.

With tenderness he took me,

When others turned aside;

He saved and ne’er forsook me,

And I am satisfied. [Refrain]

I’ll never, never leave him,

Forget, nor turn away;

I’ll love, adore, believe him,

I’ll trust him and obey;

I’ll go where’er he leads me,

Be ever at his side,

And work where’er he needs me,

For I am satisfied. [Refrain]

 

* Judson W. Van De Venter (1855–1939) was born in Michigan and following graduation from Hillsdale College, he became an art teacher and supervisor of art in the public schools of Sharon, Pennsylvania. Recognizing his talent for the ministry, friends urged him to give up teaching and become an evangelist. Van De Venter wavered for five years between becoming a recognized artist or devoting himself to ministry. Following his decision to surrender his life to the Divine, Van De Venter traveled throughout the United States, England, and Scotland, doing evangelistic work. Toward the end of his life, Van De Venter moved to Florida, and was professor of hymnology at the Florida Bible Institute for four years in the 1920s. Van De Venter published more than 60 hymns in his lifetime, but “I Surrender All” is his most famous.

 

Hymn: All I Need

“According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:”  II Peter 1:3       

One of the lessons of Christian contentment is realizing that many things in this life are not true necessities. We focus on material comforts as if they were essential to daily life. When we don’t have what we think are necessities we feel deprived, disadvantaged, unfortunate. When our material blessings are removed, we can get angry with God for not meeting what we think are our needs.

Job was tempted to curse God when he lost his children, his wealth, and his health. And yet, Job saw what he had as being given to him by God in the first place.

“‘…Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.’ In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.” Job 1:21-22

“‘…shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil [calamity]?’ In all this did not Job sin with his lips.” Job 2:10b

Yes, Job was discouraged, unhappy, and hurting. If God had turned against him, Job could see himself as an underprivileged victim, but God had not abandoned him. By the end of the book, Job learned that his only need was the holy, Almighty God who created him. When he reflected on his selfishness, Job concluded,

“…therefore have I uttered that I understood not; things too wonderful for me, which I knew not. …Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.” Job 42:3b, 6

Have you ever wonder why we weren’t given everything that we wanted? Maybe it’s because we don’t need everything we want. Maybe it’s time to learn that God has already given us all that we need in our Savior, Jesus Christ.

All I Need

by Charles Price Jones (1865-1949) *

Jesus Christ is made to me,

All I need, all I need;

He alone is all my plea,

He is all I need.

Chorus:

Wisdom, righteousness and pow’r,

Holiness forevermore,

My redemption full and sure,

He is all I need.

Jesus is my all in all,

All I need, all I need;

While He keeps I cannot fall,

He is all I need. [Chorus]

He redeemed me when He died,

All I need, all I need;

I with Him was crucified,

He is all I need. [Chorus]

To my Savior will I cleave,

All I need, all I need;

He will not His servant leave,

He is all I need. [Chorus]

He’s the treasure of my soul,

All I need, all I need;

He hath cleansed and made me whole,

He is all I need. [Chorus]

Glory, glory to the Lamb,

All I need, all I need;

By His Spirit sealed I am,

He is all I need. [Chorus]

 

* Charles Price Jones  (1865-1949) grew up in Kingston, Georgia, and attended a Baptist church. He was converted in 1884 while living in Cat Island, Arkansas. In 1885 he was called to the ministry and preached and pastored several Baptist churches. After asking God for a deeper experience of grace and fasting and praying for three days in 1895, Jones experienced a closeness with God and joined with other Baptist holiness adherents. They started a holiness movement in the Baptist church, and he began teaching holiness in his congregation of Mount Helm Baptist Church in Jackson, Mississippi. For several years, Jones led a non-denominational holiness movement. In 1899 he began to write songs for his church. Most of his hymns were inspired by a scripture passage. In 1917, Jones organized Christ Temple Church in Los Angeles with a 1,000-seat sanctuary, printing press, school building, and a girl’s dormitory. He died January 19, 1949 in Los Angeles.

 

 

 

 

Hymn: The Sands of Time Are Sinking

So teach us to number our days,

That we may gain a heart of wisdom.

Return, O Lord! How long?

And have compassion on Your servants.

Oh, satisfy us early with Your mercy,

That we may rejoice and be glad all our days!

Make us glad according to the days in which You have afflicted us,

The years in which we have seen evil.

Let Your work appear to Your servants,

And Your glory to their children.

And let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us,

And establish the work of our hands for us;

Yes, establish the work of our hands.”

Psalm 90:12-17 (NKJV)

The Sands Of Time Are Sinking

Lyrics by Annie Ross Cousin *

The sands of time are sinking,

the dawn of heaven breaks,

the summer morn I’ve sighed for,

the fair sweet morn awakes;

dark, dark hath been the midnight,

but dayspring is at hand,

and glory, glory dwelleth

in Emmanuel’s land.

The King there in his beauty

without a veil is seen;

it were a well-spent journey,

though sev’n deaths lay between:

the Lamb with his fair army

doth on Mount Zion stand,

and glory, glory dwelleth

in Emmanuel’s land.

O Christ, he is the fountain,

the deep sweet well of love!

The streams on earth I’ve tasted,

more deep I’ll drink above:

there to an ocean fullness

his mercy doth expand,

and glory, glory dwelleth

in Emmanuel’s land.

The bride eyes not her garment,

but her dear bridegroom’s face;

I will not gaze at glory,

but on my King of grace;

not at the crown he gifteth,

but on his pierc-ed hand:

the Lamb is all the glory

of Emmanuel’s land.

 

* Annie Ross Cousin (1824-1906) was the only child of Dr. David Ross Cundell, a former surgeon at the Battle of Waterloo. She received a private education and became a skilled pianist. She married a minister of the Free Church of Scotland, with whom she had six children. Shortly after their marriage, Anne began writing church hymns for her husband’s services and many of these became very popular in Britain during the mid-to late 19th century.

Her most popular song, “The Sands Of Time Are Sinking”, was written in 1854. The original version was 19 stanzas, but was not widely known until a shorted 5-verse version appeared in a hymn book, The Service of Praise. A collection of her poems, Immanuel’s Land and Other Pieces, was published in 1876 under her initials A.R.C., by which she was most widely known. Anne and her husband retired in Edinburgh after nearly 20 years of religious service.

 

“…I have learned, in whatsoever state I am,

therewith to be content.”

Philippians 4:11b

The Centurion Chronicles ends this week and this centurion thanks all soldiers who have followed along and given me words of encouragement.

My studies during 2020 have convinced me that I have a lot to learn about how to be content. I would like to share some of those lessons with you in 2021. Our study guide (besides the Bible) will be a little book written by the Puritan preacher, Jeremiah Burroughs (1599-1646) titled, The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment, published in 1648.

Please join me as we learn about Christian Contentment together.

Michael Vetter

Hymn: In Times Like These

“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.” II Timothy 3:1-5 (KJV)

 

In Times Like These

by Ruth Caye Jones *

In times like these you need a Savior,

In times like these you need an anchor;

Be very sure, be very sure,

Your anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock!

[Chorus]

This Rock is Jesus, Yes He’s the One,

This Rock is Jesus, the only One;

Be very sure, be very sure,

Your anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock!

In times like these you need the Bible,

In times like these, O be not idle;

Be very sure, be very sure,

Your anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock!

[Chorus]

In times like these I have a Savior,

In times like these I have an anchor;

I’m very sure, I’m very sure

My anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock!

[Chorus]

 

*  Ruth Caye Jones (1902-1972), a mother of five and wife of a busy pastor in Pennsylvania, was reading 2 Timothy 3:1, which says, “…in the last days perilous times shall come.” As she read the Pittsburgh newspapers in 1943, and saw the World War II casualty lists, and heard reports of the slow progress of Allied troops moving up the boot of Italy, it seemed to her those perilous times had already come. Rationing was hitting those at home hard; discouragement was everywhere. It seemed as if evil was winning!

Ruth took out a small notepad from her apron pocket and began to write down some words. A melody came to her that seemed to fit the words she wrote. She had no formal music training, but she wasn’t trying to write a song that would make her famous, but, it happened to be the right song for the right time and soon, people around the world were singing it!

Years later, when she was watching a Billy Graham crusade on television, she heard George Beverly Shea sing this song…her song…and tears came to her eyes. She said, “I can’t believe I had any part in writing this song. I just feel that God gave it to me, and I gave it to the world.”

“…I have learned, in whatsoever state I am,

therewith to be content.”

Philippians 4:11b

The Centurion Chronicles ends this week and this centurion thanks all soldiers who have followed along and given me words of encouragement.

My studies during 2020 have convinced me that I have a lot to learn about how to be content. I would like to share some of those lessons with you in 2021. Our study guide (besides the Bible) will be a little book written by the Puritan preacher, Jeremiah Burroughs (1599-1646) titled, The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment, published in 1648.

Please join me as we learn about Christian Contentment together.

Michael Vetter

Thou Didst Leave Thy Throne and Thy Kingly Crown

“Be silent, all flesh, before the LORD”

 

Be still, and know that I am God;

I will be exalted among the nations,

I will be exalted in the earth!”  Psalm 46:10 (NKJV)

 

Thou Didst Leave Thy Throne and Thy Kingly Crown

by Emily Elizabeth Steele Elliott (E.E.S. Elliott; 1836-1897) *

Thou didst leave Thy throne and Thy kingly crown,

When Thou camest to earth for me;

But in Bethlehem’s home was there found no room

For Thy holy nativity.

O come to my heart, Lord Jesus,

There is room in my heart for Thee.

Heaven’s arches rang when the angels sang,

Proclaiming Thy royal degree;

But of lowly birth didst Thou come to earth,

And in great humility.

O come to my heart, Lord Jesus,

There is room in my heart for Thee.

The foxes found rest, and the birds their nest

In the shade of the forest tree;

But Thy couch was the sod, O Thou Son of God,

In the deserts of Galilee.

O come to my heart, Lord Jesus,

There is room in my heart for Thee.

Thou camest, O Lord, with the living word

That should set Thy people free;

But with mocking scorn, and with crown of thorn,

They bore Thee to Calvary.

O come to my heart, Lord Jesus,

There is room in my heart for Thee.

When the heav’ns shall ring, and the angels sing,

At Thy coming to victory,

Let Thy voice call me home, saying “Yet there is room,

There is room at My side for thee.”

My heart shall rejoice, Lord Jesus,

When Thou comest and callest for me.

 

*  Emily Elizabeth Steele Elliott (1836-1897) was the author of Chimes for Daily Service (1880) containing 71 hymns arranged in two parts, the second of which was published separately as a large-print book for hospitals with the title, Under the Pillow. Many of her hymns were written for the choir at St. Mark’s Church, Brighton, England, where her father, the vicar, emphasized Bible prophecy in his sermons. Elliott was also the author of a translation of “Silent Night, Holy Night” from the original German in 1858. Associated with the Evangelical Party of the Anglican Church (also known as the Low Church Party), she spent her life working with rescue missions and children in their Sunday Schools. For six years she edited a magazine called the Church Missionary Juvenile Instructor.

Hallelujah! for the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth.
The Kingdom of this world is become the Kingdom of our Lord, and of His Christ; and He shall reign for ever and ever.
King of kings, and Lord of lords
and He shall reign for ever and ever.
Hallelujah!

Revelation 19:6, 11:15, 19:16 (from Handel’s Messiah)

 

 

 

 

 

This World is Not My Home

The Celestial City

[Jesus said,] “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” Matthew 6:31-34 (NKJV)

“If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.” Colossians 3:1-2

Soldiers, we are in difficult times as the Lord’s return draws near. God told us that perilous times would come and evil would grow worse and worse. (II Timothy 3:1-4) Jesus said, “Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.” (Luke 21:28)  Fellow soldiers, when this fight is over we will finally return to the home of beloved brothers and sisters who have gone on before us. Our earthly land will fade into a distant memory when we see our Savior face to face.

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in ChristEphesians 1:3

 

This World is Not My Home

by J.R. Baxter, Jr. (1887-1960) *

This world is not my home I’m just-a-passing through

My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue

Angels beckon me to heaven’s open door

And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore

Chorus

Oh Lord you know I have no friend like you

If heaven’s not my home oh Lord what will I do

Angels beckon me to heaven’s open door

And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore

They’re all expecting me that’s one thing I know

I fixed it up with Jesus a long time ago

He will take me through though I am weak and poor

And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore

[Chorus]

Over in glory land there’ll be no dying there

The saints all shouting victory and singing everywhere

I hear the voice of them that’s gone on before

And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore

[Chorus]

 

J.R. (Pap) Baxter, Jr. (1887-1960) was a Southern Gospel composer and publisher who grew up in De­Kalb Coun­ty, Al­a­ba­ma. In 1926, he bought part of what be­came the Stamps-Bax­ter Mu­sic and Print­ing Com­pa­ny, one of the most suc­cess­ful Gos­pel mu­sic pub­lish­ers of the ear­ly 20th century. Bax­ter ran the com­pa­ny’s Chat­ta­noo­ga, Ten­nes­see, of­fice un­til Stamps’ death in 1940, then moved to Dall­as, Tex­as, to run the main of­fice. Af­ter Bax­ter’s death, his wife, Clarice, ran the bus­i­ness un­til she died; it was then sold to Zon­der­van Publishing.

Southern Gospel music originated in songs sung by slaves who came to Christ after the Great Awakening. Because of their unimaginably harsh lives under slavery, a common theme of gospel singers was their joyous expectation of freedom from suffering, pain, tears, and poverty when they crossed the Jordan River into the heavenly Promised Land. Hymns such as “This World is Not My Home” were sung with happy anticipation that the slaves’ current misery was only temporary and soon they would see their Savior in that Holy City, New Jerusalem!

 “And I [John] saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.” Revelation 21:1-4

Look up and fight on!

 

I’m a Pilgrim

Abraham the Sojourner in Canaan

“By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to the place which he would receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going. By faith he dwelt in the land of promise as in a foreign country, dwelling in tents with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise; for he waited for the city which has foundations, whose builder and maker is God.” Hebrews 11:8-10 (NKJV)

“Therefore be patient, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, waiting patiently for it until it receives the early and latter rain. You also be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.” James 5:7-8

Below is the song of a traveler with his eyes set on his true home. He dares not be delayed or stray from the path that leads upward to a place prepared by his Savior who waits to welcome him with open arms. Never forget, fellow soldiers, that this world is not our home. Our earthly citizenship, with its ties to family, friends, church, town, or country, cannot compare to that heavenly city where we will spend eternity together.

 

I’m a Pilgrim

(First verse and chorus)

I’m a pilgrim, and I’m a stranger;
I can tarry but a night,
Do not detain me, for I am going
To where the fountains are ever flowing.

There the glory is ever shining!
O, my longing heart, my longing heart is there,
Here in this country so dark and dreary,
I long have wandered forlorn and weary:

[Chorus]

There’s the city to which I journey;
My Redeemer, my Redeemer is its light!
There is no sorrow nor any sighing.
Nor any tears there, nor any dying.

[Chorus]

Farewell, dreary earth, by sin so blighted,
In immortal beauty soon you’ll be arrayed!
He who has formed thee will soon restore thee!
And then thy dread curse shall never more be.

[Chorus]

* From The Southern Zion’s Songster; Hymns Designed for Sabbath Schools, Prayer, and Social Meetings, and the Camps. Published by the North Carolina Christian Advocate Publishing Company, 1864.

Originating as hymns of white Protestant churches following the Great Awakening, Southern gospel music expressed a revival of Protestant Christianity in rural areas during the early 19th century before the Civil War. In the South, this movement was spread by horse-riding preachers in camp meetings where the proprieties of polite society gave way to spirited singing and other forms of lively religious behavior. Southern gospel music, although based on Protestant hymnody (hymn singing), blended hymns with folk songs and black gospel music.

The lyrics for I’m a Pilgrim vary in old hymnals, but historians agree that songs of this type were typical of early Southern gospel music after the Great Awakening. The gospel tune popularized on the 1940’s as a bluegrass ballad titled, I am a Pilgrim, was a precursor to country music.

“Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God.’” Revelation 21:2-3

Fight the Good Fight With All Thy Might

Fight the good fight of the faith

“And [Jahaziel] said, ‘Listen, all you of Judah and you inhabitants of Jerusalem, and you, King Jehoshaphat! Thus says the LORD to you: ‘Do not be afraid nor dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God’s. II Chronicles 20:15

“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.” Ephesians 6:10

 

Fight the Good Fight With All Thy Might

by John S.B. Monsell  *

Fight the good fight with all thy might;

Christ is thy strength, and Christ thy right:

lay hold on life, and it shall be

thy joy and crown eternally.

Run the straight race through God’s good grace,

lift up thine eyes, and seek his face;

life with its way before us lies,

Christ is the path, and Christ the prize.

Cast care aside; upon thy Guide

lean, and his mercy will provide;

lean, and the trusting soul shall prove,

Christ is its life and Christ its love.

Faint not, nor fear, his arms are near;

he changeth not, and thou art dear;

only believe, and thou shalt see

that Christ is all in all to thee.

* John Samuel Bewley Monsell (1811-1875) was educated at Trinity College in Dublin and served as a chaplain and rector of several churches in Ireland after his ordination in 1835. Transferred to England in 1853, he became rector of Egham in Surrey and was rector of St. Nicholas Church in Guilford from 1870 until his death (caused by a construction accident at his church). A prolific poet, Monsell published his verse in eleven volumes. He wrote thee hundred hymns including “Worship the Lord in the Beauty of Holiness,” “Christ is the Foundation,” and “Soon, Soon, and Forever Our Union Shall Be.”

Stay alert! Grab your sword! Fight on!

 

Shall We Gather at the River?

The illustration above depicts Julius Caesar crossing the River Rubicon on his way to Rome. Once Caesar did this in 49 BC, he and his men were committed to overthrowing the Roman Republic that had lasted for 700 years. Today, “crossing the Rubicon” refers to an individual or group committing itself irrevocably to a risky course of action, similar to the modern phrase “passing the point of no return.”

Salvation is a step of faith, believing that the holy, sinless Son of God will save me from sin through His substitutionary, atoning death on the cross. It is faith that what the Bible says about sin, salvation, and the Savior is true and that my very life depends on it. Jesus said this to a woman when He asked her for a drink of water from a well: “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.” (John 4:13-14 NKJV)

As fellow-soldiers, we have assurance that God will keep His Word and that our eternal destiny depends only on His faithfulness and not our own. As fellow-soldiers, fellow-laborers, and fellow-servants, we will meet together at a river one day in the New Jerusalem and spend eternity at the foot of the throne of God. Will you meet us there at that river?

E. W. Long’s Illustrated History of Hymns and their Authors says this about our “Battle Hymn” for today:

“On a very hot summer day, in 1864, Robert Lowry was seated in his parlor in Brooklyn, NY. It was a time when an epidemic was sweeping through the city, and draping many persons and dwellings in mourning. All around friends and acquaintances were passing away in large numbers. The question began to arise in the heart, with unusual emphasis, ‘Shall we meet again? We are parting at the river of death, shall we meet at the river of life?’ ‘Seating myself at the organ,’ says he, ‘simply to give vent to the pent up emotions of the heart, the words and music of the hymn began to flow out, as if by inspiration:—
‘Shall we gather at the river,
Where bright angel feet have trod?’”

 

Shall We Gather at the River?

by Robert Lowry

Shall we gather at the river,

Where bright angel feet have trod;

With its crystal tide forever

Flowing by the throne of God?

Refrain

Yes, we’ll gather at the river,

The beautiful, the beautiful river;

Gather with the saints at the river

That flows by the throne of God.

On the margin of the river,

Washing up its silver spray,

We will walk and worship ever,

All the happy golden day. [Refrain]

Ere we reach the shining river,

Lay we ev’ry burden down;

Grace our spirits will deliver,

And provide a robe and crown. [Refrain]

Soon we’ll reach the shining river,

Soon our pilgrimage will cease;

Soon our happy hearts will quiver

With the melody of peace. [Refrain]

“And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.”  Revelation 22:1-2

 

The Bugle Call

“Listen to the sound of the trumpet!”

The Roman Army bugle (trumpet) gave signals to soldiers while marching in formation or on the battlefield when their commander wanted them to move in certain directions as a unit. Thousands of troops maneuvered at a single command to execute their leader’s will.

The Bible demonstrates that God uses trumpets to announce major events about His will and intentions for believers. The verses below illustrate how God initiates His sovereignty over history in commanding the Rapture, warnings about the coming Day of the Lord, and the regathering of Israel at the end of the Great Tribulation.

“Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed—in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.” I Corinthians 15:51-52 (NKJV)

Blow the trumpet in Zion, And sound an alarm in My holy mountain! Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble; For the day of the LORD is coming, For it is at hand:”  Joel 2:1

“Also, I set watchmen over you, saying, ‘Listen to the sound of the trumpet!’ But they said, ‘We will not listen.’” Jeremiah 6:17

“Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”  Matthew 24:30-31

The battle hymn below is a “call to arms” for Christian soldiers to prepare for spiritual warfare which we must fight without rest until the trumpet signals that the battle is over and we are called to meet the Lord Jesus in the air!

The Bugle Call

Lyrics by James Summerfield Bitler, Sr. *

Hear the bugle calling,

Come without delay;

Every man be ready

For the fight today.

Do not sleep in danger,

Do not hesitate;

Rouse you up, O soldiers,

For the foe is great.

Refrain

Hear the bugle calling,

Calling you and me;

Awake, ye soldiers of the cross!

Hear the bugle calling,

Calling you and me,

Come without delay;

Rouse you up, O soldiers,

For the fight today!

Hear the bugle calling,

Time is going fast;

Men are dying ’round you,

Life will soon be past!

Seize the moment quickly,

Speak the word just now;

Trust the Lord to guide you,

He will show you how. [Refrain]

Hear the bugle calling;

See, it calls for you!

Don’t say there are others,

That will never do.

For your place, my brother,

Others cannot fill;

You must do your duty,

Do it with a will! [Refrain]

*  James Summerfield Bitler, Sr. (1852–1926) grad­u­at­ed from Ohio Wes­ley­an Un­i­ver­si­ty around 1870. He be­came a well-known ev­an­gel­ist, liv­ing in Ohio, In­di­a­na, Il­li­nois, Mis­so­uri, and Ne­bras­ka. At the time of death, he was pas­tor of the First Me­thod­ist Epis­co­pal Church in Ham­den, Ohio.

Stay alert! Listen for the trumpet!