"HE WILL HIDE ME"
"For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion…He shall set me up upon a rock" (Ps. 27.5)
INTRO.: A song which pictures Jesus as a refuge who hides us in time of trouble is " He Will Hide Me" (#124 in Sacred Selections for the Church). The text was written by Miss Mary Elizabeth Servoss, who was born in 1849 at Schenectady, NY. Living with her crippled grandmother for eighteen years, Mary later took care of her mother and then her father until they died. It is said that Fanny Crosby was Mary’s motivation to produce gospel songs. Two of these songs, this one and "Be Glad in the Lord, and Rejoice," appear in the 1881 Sacred Songs and Solos compiled by Ira David Sankey. Another, "’Tis Jesus When the Burdened Heart" was published in the 1887 Voice of Praise published by the Sunday School Union. Cyberhymnal lists another, "O Zion, Acclaim Your Redeemer!" Toward the end of her life, Mary lived in Edeson, IL, where she died around 1906.
The tune was composed by James McGranahan (1840-1907). It is also assumed to be dated around 1881. Among hymnbooks published by members of the Lord’s church during the twentieth century for use in churches of Christ, the song appeared in the 1937 Great Songs of the Church No. 2 edited by E. L. Jorgenson; the 1948 Christian Hymns No. 2 and the 1966 Christian Hymns No. 3 both edited by L. O. Sanderson; and the 1963 Abiding Hymns edited by Robert C. Welch. The chorus alone appeared in the 1963 Christian Hymnal edited by J. Nelson Slater. Today the song may be found in the 1971 Songs of the Church edited by Alton H. Howard, in addition to Sacred Selections. The chorus alone is again found in the 1978/1983 (Church) Gospel Songs and Hymns edited by V. E. Howard.
The song refers to several scenarios in which we can hide in Jesus for refuge.
I. Stanza 1 mentions storms of life
"When the storms of life are raging–Tempests wild on sea and land,
I will seek a place of refuge In the shadow of God’s hand."
A. Storms of life are often symbolized poetically by tempests such as occur on sea and land: Ps. 107.23-28
B. Just as a ship seeks a safe harbor during a story, so God offers a place of refuge: Ps. 46.1
C. This place of refuge is symbolically referred to as the shadow of His hand: Ps. 17.8
II. Stanza 2 mentions afflictions
"Though He may send some affliction, ‘Twill but make me long for home;
For in love and not in anger, All His chastenings will come."
A. Some may not like to think of God as sending afflictions, but the fact is that afflictions do come and God allows even the righteous to endure them: Ps. 34.19
B. However, for the person who truly loves God, these afflictions will but make him long for home because he knows that the sufferings of the present time are not to be compared with the glory that shall be revealed afterward: Rom. 8.18
C. Therefore, Christians understand that whatever God allows to chasten us, it is because He loves us: Heb. 12.5-7
III. Stanza 3 mentions enemies
"Enemies may strive to injure, Satan all his arts employ;
He will turn what seems to harm me Into everlasting joy."
A. God’s people will face many enemies in life: Phil. 3.18
B. The chief of these enemies is Satan who goes about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour: 1 Pet. 5.8
C. However, God can turn the tribulations which our enemies intend for our harm into good that can bring everlasting joy: Rom. 5.3-4, 8.28-30.
IV. Stanza 4 mentions cross bearing
"So, while here the cross I’m bearing, Meeting storms and billows wild,
Jesus for my soul is caring; Naught can harm His Father’s child."
A. The storms of life, afflictions, persecutions of enemies are all part of the cross that we are called upon to bear: Matt. 16.24
B. However, we can know for certain that Jesus for our souls is caring: 1 Pet. 5.7
C. Therefore, if we truly love and cling to Him, nothing can harm us or separate us from His love: Rom. 8.38-30
CONCL.: The chorus continues to emphasize that the Lord will hide us.
"He will hide me, He will hide me, Where no harm can e’er betide me;
He will hide me, safely hide me, In the shadow of His hand."
There will be times when life bring various sufferings my way, but it is always of great comfort and encouragement to know that if I put my trust in Jesus Christ "He Will Hide Me."