“Add A Verse”

Almost everyone of school age and up recognizes the first verse of “The Star Spangled Banner” and many have memorized it. Very few indeed know any of the other three stanzas. It’s too bad we don’t also sing the last stanza because it contains the words, “in God is our trust.” This made me realize that several hymns we sing have stand alone verses that we seldom if ever sing but which could enhance our learning of spiritual truths.

Many children learn “Jesus Loves Me” at a very tender age. It would be great if not only the kids but the adults also added the 2nd and 3rd verses. The 2nd verse says, “He who died heaven’s gate to open wide; He will wash away my sin, Let his little child come in.”
Verse 3 reads, “On the cross you died for me, I will try to live for thee.” A great gospel message in a “child’s” song.

Often verses of a hymn will reflect the teachings of Christ. In “A Mighty Fortress” we sing these words, “Let goods and kindred go, This mortal life also; The body they may kill: God’s truth abideth still…” Our Lord Jesus taught, “Do not be afraid of those who
kill the body but cannot kill the soul…” (Mt 10:28) In the hymn “Great is Thy Faithfulness” we sing these words, “Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow…” This reinforces Ephesians 3:16 and John 14:1-3)

We could reference many other songs that paraphrase biblical truths. Singing is commanded in the Lord’s church and allows us to exhort and encourage others as well as giving us much happiness. (Eph 5: 19) (Col 3:16) (Jas 5:13) The diligent Christian should enjoy mining these gems. In other words, we should not be averse to add a verse.

—Jim Bailey