Let Jesus Dwell Within Your Soul


“That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith…being rooted and grounded in love” (Eph. 3:17)

     INTRO.:  A song which exhorts us to allow Christ to dwell in our hearts by faith is “Let Jesus Dwell Within Your Soul” (#661 in Hymns for Worship Revised, and #519 in Sacred Selections for the Church).  The text was written by Miss Vernie Prichard, about whom I have been able to find no further information.  The tune was composed by D. A. Roberson.  One source says that it was owned by Stamps – Baxter Music, but all other sources say that it was copyrighted by the Quartet Music Company; I have not been able to identify the date.  I have been able to locate almost no further information on Roberson either, except that according to Hymnary.org, he was the author of four texts, “Can the world see Jesus in your life?”, “In heaven the Lord has a mansion,” “There’s a train that’s bound for glory,” and “Labor on each day,” the last of which was occasionally found in some books edited by Will W. Slater.  Among hymnbooks published by members of the Lord’s church for use in churches of Christ, “Let Jesus Dwell Within Your Soul” has appeared in the 1978 Hymns of Praise edited by Reuel Lemmons; and the 2007 Sacred Songs of the Church edited by William D. Jeffcoat; in addition to Hymns for Worship and Sacred Selections.

The song mentions several situations in which we need to make sure that we have Jesus dwelling in our souls

I. Stanza 1 refers to sighing

O will you now from sighing cease?

O will you seek the path of peace?

Give Christ your heart, make heaven your goal,

Let Jesus dwell within your soul.

  1. Sighing is usually a sign of experiencing sadness and trouble: Ps. 31:9-10
  2. One reason that many sigh is because they lack the peace of God ruling in their hearts: Col. 3:15
  3. Therefore, the Lord offers to help us deal with our sighings if we give Him our hearts: Prov. 23:26

II. Stanza 2 refers to trials

Through trials oft your soul must go,

The Savior wills this to be so,

Trust Him with all, as they of old,

Let Jesus dwell within your soul.

  1. As long as we live on earth, we shall go through manifold trials: 1 Pet. 1:6
  2. The Savior wills this to be so in the sense that He allow it to strengthen us: Jas. 1:2-4
  3. But He will help us bear them if we let Him dwell within us and trust Him: Ps. 37:3-6

III. Stanza 3 refers to sorrows

Though sorrows come and troubles sore,

Trust in the Savior more and more;

Though oft you’ve sinned, He’ll make you whole,

Let Jesus dwell within your soul.

  1. No matter who we are, this life will have it share of sorrows: Eccl. 2:22-23
  2. To help us deal with our sorrows, we need to trust the Savior more and more: Prov. 3:5-6
  3. Many of our sorrows are the result of our sins, but Christ can make us whole if we seek His forgiveness: 1 Jn. 1:9

IV. Stanza 4 refers to sin

Poor sinners, hear His voice of love,

‘Tis calling you to heaven above;

Give Him your heart, He’ll make it whole,

Let Jesus dwell within your soul.

  1. At one time or another all responsible people are sinners because all have sinned: Rom. 3:23
  2. But Jesus is calling sinners to salvation through the gospel: 2 Thess. 2:13-14
  3. And if we give Him our hearts, He’ll make us whole because He offers redemption through His blood: Eph. 1:7

V. Stanza 5 refers to death

And when the hour of death draws near,

Trust Him to take away all fear,

The joys of heaven will soon unfold,

Let Jesus dwell within your soul.

  1. Every day that we live, the hour of death draws near because it is appointed for men to die once: Heb. 9:27
  2. However, if we trust Jesus, He will take away all fear: Heb. 2:14-15
  3. Thus, through Him the joys of heaven will unfold for the righteous: 1 Pet. 1:3-5

CONCL.:  The chorus, which can be omitted if there aren’t all the parts needed, continues to encourage us to let Jesus dwell in our souls all of our lives.

Let Jesus dwell within your soul,

Let Jesus dwell within your soul;

Let joys increase as ages roll,

Let Jesus dwell within your soul.

After Sacred Selections became the almost universally used hymnbook among churches in the area where I grew up, I noticed that when we attended Sunday afternoon singings in congregations with a lot of strong altos and tenors this song was often sung.  It has never been one of my favorites, but I certainly would want to encourage you, as I do everyone, to “Let Jesus Dwell Within Your Soul.”


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