God has given us His word and everything we need is in it. A firm foundation has been laid for us. God needs to say no more than He has already said in His word. It’s all there. I love the way the verses in this hymn build on the “theme” developed in the first verse, each calling upon Scripture to encourage us to perseverance and hope.
Resolve this year to build on the firm foundation that God has provided in His word. Read it, study it, know it, and ask the Holy Spirit to write the words deep on your heart.
(For more musings on this great hymn, see How Firm a Foundation.)
How Firm a Foundation
Words from A Selection of Hymns from the Best Authors, by John Rippon, 1787
How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,
Is laid for your faith in His excellent Word!
What more can He say than to you He hath said,
You, who unto Jesus for refuge have fled?
For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. Romans 15:4
In every condition, in sickness, in health;
In poverty’s vale, or abounding in wealth;
At home and abroad, on the land, on the sea,
As thy days may demand, shall thy strength ever be.
Thy shoes shall be iron and brass; and as thy days, so shall thy strength be. Deut. 33:25
Fear not, I am with thee, O be not dismayed,
For I am thy God and will still give thee aid;
I’ll strengthen and help thee, and cause thee to stand
Upheld by My righteous, omnipotent hand.
Do not fear, for I am with you. Do not look anxiously about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you; surely I will help you. Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10
When through the deep waters I call thee to go,
The rivers of woe shall not thee overflow;
For I will be with thee, thy troubles to bless,
And sanctify to thee thy deepest distress.
But now, thus says the LORD, your Creator, O Jacob, and He who formed you, O Israel, "Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine! When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they will not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched nor will the flame burn you. For I am the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.” Isaiah 43:1-3a
When through fiery trials thy pathways shall lie,
My grace, all sufficient, shall be thy supply;
The flame shall not hurt thee; I only design
Thy dross to consume, and thy gold to refine.
And He has said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness." Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. II Corinthians 2:9
But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner's fire and like fullers' soap. He will sit as a smelter and purifier of silver, and He will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, so that they may present to the LORD offerings in righteousness. Malachi 3:2-3
Even down to old age all My people shall prove
My sovereign, eternal, unchangeable love;
And when hoary hairs shall their temples adorn,
Like lambs they shall still in My bosom be borne.
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. John 3:16
The soul that on Jesus has leaned for repose,
I will not, I will not desert to its foes;
That soul, though all hell should endeavor to shake,
I’ll never, no never, no never forsake.
Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid or tremble at them, for the LORD your God is the one who goes with you. He will not fail you or forsake you. Deut. 31:6