- Francis Jane Crosby was born into a family of strong Puritan ancestry in New York on March 24, 1820. As a baby, she had an eye infection which a quack doctor treated by placing hot poultices on her red and inflamed eyelids. The infection did clear up, but scars formed on the eyes, and the baby girl became blind for life. A few months later, Fanny’s dad became ill and died. Mercy Crosby, widowed at 21, hired herself out as a maid while Grandmother Eunice Crosby took care of little Fanny. Grandmother took the education of her little granddaughter on herself and became the girl’s eyes, vividly describing the physical world. Grandmother’s careful teaching helped develop Fanny’s descriptive abilities. But Grandmother also nurtured Fanny’s spirit. She read and carefully explained the Bible to her, and she always emphasized the importance of prayer. When Fanny became depressed because she couldn’t learn as other children did, Grandmother taught her to pray to God for knowledge. In 1834 Fanny learned of the New York Institute for the Blind and knew this was the answer to her prayer for an education. She entered the school when she was twelve and went on to teach there for twenty-three years. She became somewhat of a celebrity at the school and was called upon to write poems for almost every conceivable occasion. On March 5, 1858, Fanny married Alexander van Alstine, a former pupil at the Institute. He was a musician who was considered one of the finest organists in the New York area. One evening, Fanny’s friend and composer Phoebe Palmer Knapp was visiting and played a tune on the piano, asking Fanny what it sounded like. Fanny responded “Blessed Assurance, Jesus is mine!” Phoebe and Fanny then continued to sing the melody and write the lyrics together.
- I believe very strongly that in order to write Gospel songs and hymns a person must “know” Christ as their Savior.
- Songs are written by people that wish to express their personal experiences that inspired their writing. Our Bible is much of the same writings.
- Entering The Presence of God
- Not possible by ourselves
- Paul lists in this one verse what you must do to enter the presence of God.
- In looking at our text note the very first words… Hebrews 10:22…Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.
- Before entering the presence of God we must…
- Have “a true heart (for God)” This is our sincerity.
- Have a “full assurance of faith” This is our security.
- “…having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience,” This is our salvation. Jesus blood being sprinkled on our conscience.
- Have “…our bodies washed with pure water” This is our sanctification.
- I cannot emphasize enough how important it is for us to know Jesus Christ as our Lord (Ruler of our life) and Savior (rescued us from hell).
- We cannot think of entering the presence of a holy God without Jesus Christ.
- This is why Fanny Crosby penned the words “Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine.”
- She wrote of her own personal experience with Jesus
I. Blessed Assurance Jesus Is Mine
A) Oh what a foretaste
- The word “foretaste” implies that you have “tasted” it before.
- When Fanny wrote these words, I believe that she had already tasted of the devil’s food, and is now tasting of the fruits of a life in Jesus Christ.
- How many of you have tasted “meatloaf” before? It depends upon the person who made it right? There is fantastic, good and bad meatloaf.
- I personally have never tasted a fantastic or good meatloaf. I am sure it’s out there, but I have never experienced it.
- If I may say, tasting meatloaf is like tasting Christ. Many people have never really bitten into a good life with Christ Jesus at the helm.
B) Knowing for sure
- Blessed assurance means … to know for sure without any doubt in your mind.
- You can know that Jesus is your Lord, and Savior.
- Look at I John 5:2…By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.
- Now here is something that no one wants to hear… when a person loves God and loves His children he will what? Keep His commandments.
- This my friend is how you can have “Blessed assurance.”
- You can know that “Jesus is mine!”
C) Heir of Salvation, purchase of God
- How do we become “heirs of salvation?” Accepting Jesus Christ as our Savior.
- Well, how do we do accept Jesus? You accept Jesus the same way you accept anything. You engulf it, you make it part of your life, you spent time with it, love it nurture it.
- Many people think of Jesus as a novelty and place Him on a shelf, and only take Him down when you want to or have nothing better to do.
- God has purchased our salvation with the blood of His very own Son Jesus Christ.
- Romans 8:17…And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.
- Paul’s letter to the Romans here is telling them… if you are children of God, heirs of His salvation, joint heirs of Jesus Christ, then you will suffer through the same things that He suffered (tormented and ridiculed by the world) so that God may be glorified in all that we do.
- We cannot earn our salvation. It is already purchased.
- Being obedient to God is “proof” of your salvation, not it’s purchase.
Born of His Spirit, Washed in His blood
- John 3:5…Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. 6) That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7) Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.
- John here tells us that in order for you to be a part of the family of God, you must be born of water and of the Spirit. Water was always used as a metaphor signifying a spiritual cleansing. This is a purification of the soul.
- The only way to enter heaven or be a part of the family of God is to go through a spiritual transformation, a cleansing, removal of dirt and debris.
- This is how you can know “…that Jesus is Mine.”
II. Perfect Submission, Perfect Delight
A) Visions of rapture
- This too is a daily hope of those who have that “Blessed assurance.”
- Titus 2:13…Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;
- Jesus Christ’s resurrection from the dead is “Key” to our hope. In knowing that He had risen from the dead insures us that we too will someday do the same.
- Perfect submission to God brings perfect delight to the eyes of God and that is what He judges us with… delight knowing that we are His children.
B) Angels descending
- This part of the song is unique when Fanny writes … Angels descending, bring from above, echoes of mercy, whispers of love.
- “Echoes of mercy” meaning… that God is continually giving to us mercy. Over and over He extends His mercy to an ungrateful nation, an unthankful people, an undeserving soul.
- The mercy of God is truly a blessing and worthy to be sung about.
- Angels are ministers of God. In this song it states that angels are bringing to us mercy and love from where? “Above.” This meaning God has given it to us.
- It is a blessed assurance to know that Jesus is mine when I receive the “mercy” of God and the “love” of God.
III. Perfect Submission, All Is At Rest
A) A sense of security
- A person has a sense of security when they “know” things are taken care of.
- I am a person who wants to get my work finished for the day and know that I can rest easy since it is done.
- When there is still work to be done, it is hard to rest.
- Jesus Christ has done all the work for us concerning our salvation.
- His name alone (Jesus) means Salvation or Savior.
- I Timothy 1:1…Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the commandment of God our Saviour, and Lord Jesus Christ, which is our hope;
- I John 4:14…And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world. 15) Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.
- The rest of the song goes like this….
I in my Savior am happy and blest,
Watching and waiting, looking above,
Filled with His goodness, lost in His love.
- Security comes when you know Jesus as your Savior.
- How do you know Jesus is your Savior?
- You will be “watching and waiting” for His return…looking above (looking to the things of God not the world.)
- You will be “…filled with His goodness.” To be filled means to be everyday doing something good. Doing something that would make Him be glorified. We should be so full of His goodness that it overflows into other people’s lives.
- You will be “…lost in His Love” To be lost in the love of someone is to be overwhelmed with their being. Every time their name is mentioned it brings a smile to your face. When you talk to them it brings laughter and joy to your heart. When you are near them it brings an overwhelming response from you to reciprocate the same to others.
This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Savior all the day long;
This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Savior all the day long.