[Biblemat] hymn study, "I Walk With The King"

Wayne S Walker wswalker310 at juno.com
Fri Mar 24 20:13:46 CST 2006

Wayne Walker here with another weekly hymn study.

"As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in Him"
(Col. 2.6)
     INTRO.:  A song which encourages us to walk in Christ Jesus the Lord
as we have received Him is "I Walk With The King" (#546 in Hymns for
Worship Revised and #174 in Sacred Selections for the Church).  The text
was written by James Rowe (1865-1933).  A prolific gospel song-text
author, he is perhaps best known for the words of "Love Lifted Me."  The
tune was composed by Bentley DeForest Ackley, who was born on Sept. 27,
1872, at Spring Hill, PA, and showed early musical talent, learning the
melodeon, piano. coronet, clarinet, and piccolo as a boy.  His father,
from whom he received his first music lessons, was a music teacher, and
Bentley often accompanied him on trips, playing in his fourteen-piece
band.  In 1888, he moved to New York City, NY, to study stenography. 
After serving as an organist in New York City and Brooklyn, he joined the
evangelistic team of Billy Sunday, for which Homer Rodeheaver was the
song director, in 1907.  
      For about eight years, Ackley travelled with them as a musician,
supplying new songs for the services, and secretary.  His younger
brother, Alfred Henry Ackley, was also a gospel songwriter.  Later, both
of them served as hymn composers and songbook editors for the Rodeheaver
Publishing Company.  "I Walk With the King" was produced in 1913 and was
first published in the 1915 Great Revival Hymns No. 2, compiled by B. D.
Ackley, Rodeheaver, and Charles Hutchinson Gabriel.  The copyright was
renewed in 1943 by The Rodeheaver Co. which is now a division of Word
Inc.  In all, Ackley is credited with more than 3,000 hymn tunes, over
100 of which were in collaboration, beginning in 1930, with Oswald
Jeffray Smith.  Some of Ackley's other well-known tunes include those for
"I Would Be Like Jesus" and "What Shall It Be?"  
     In recognition of his contribution to sacred music, Ackley was
awarded an honorary Doctor of Sacred Music degree from Bob Jones
University in Greenville, SC.   Shortly after that, he died on Sept. 3,
1958, at Winona Lake, IN.  Among hymnbooks published by members of the
Lord's church during the twentieth century for use in churches of Christ,
"I Walk With the King" appeared in the 1937 Great Songs of the Church No.
2 edited by E. L. Jorgenson.  Today, it may be found in the 1971 Songs of
the Church, the 1990 Songs of the Church 21st C. Ed., and the 1994 Songs
of Faith and Praise all edited by Alton H. Howard; and the 1992 Praise
for the Lord edited by John P. Wiegand; in addition to Hymns for Worship
and Sacred Selections.
     The song specifies several blessings that those who walk in Christ
can enjoy.
I. Stanza 1 tells us that those who walk in Christ have rest
"In sorrow I wandered, my spirit oppressed,  But now I am happy, securely
I rest;
>From morning till evening glad carols I sing, And this is the reason--I
walk with the King."
 A. Since all have sinned, all at one time or another have wandered or
gone astray like sheep: Isa. 53.6
 B. However, Jesus promises all those who come to Him that He will give
them rest: Matt. 11.28-30
 C. Therefore, those who walk with the King can sing glad carols: Jas.
II. Stanza 2 tells us that those who walk in Christ have freedom
"For years in the fetters of sin I was bound, The world could not help
me--no comfort I found;
But now like the birds and the sunbeams of spring, I'm free and
rejoicing--I walk with the King."
 A. The word "fetter" means a chain; those who wander in sin become
slaves of sin: Rom. 6.12-16
 B. The world cannot help us because the things of the world are not of
God: 1 Jn. 2.15-17
 C. However, when we obey the gospel of Christ, we are made free from
sin: Rom. 6.17-18
III. Stanza 3 tells us that those who walk in Christ have the joy of
"O soul near despair the lowlands of strife, Look up and let Jesus come
into your life;
The joy of salvation to you He would bring--Come into the sunlight and
walk with the King."
 A. The reason that many souls are near despair in the lowlands of strife
is because of sin: Rom. 3.23, 6.23
 B. However, because Jesus died to save us from sin, we can look up and
let Him come into our lives, just as Moses lifted up the serpent and said
that everyone who looked upon it would be saved: Jn. 3.14-15
 C. But only by turning to Christ in repentance can we receive this joy
of salvation: Ps. 51.10-12
     CONCL.:  The chorus then expresses the exuberance of one who so
walks in Christ.
"I walk with the King, Hallelujah!  I walk with the King, praise His
No longer I roam, my soul faces home; I walk and I talk with the King."
There are many situations in life which may bring me sadness and
sorrow--trials and tribulations, the death of loved ones, and other such
problems.  Yet, those who are in Christ can have an inner peace that will
sustain them and bring true joy no matter what happens.  All of the
wonderful blessings mentioned in this song are available to me when "I
Walk With the King."
Wayne S. Walker
9024 Amona Dr.
Affton, MO  63123
home phone: (314) 638-4710
office phone: (314) 544-1612
e-mail: wswalker310 at juno.com
website: www.defenderoftruth.com
     Notes: Other hymn studies are available at the Defender of Truth
website.  Also, some of my previous hymn studies are now included in book
that I have written entitled Songs of Zion.  It can be ordered from the
publisher by calling 1-800-423-2484 or going to www.faith-facts.com.  And
if you would like to receive a similar daily hymn study by e-mail, you
can join the Hymn of the Day list by sending a blank e-mail to
hymnoftheday-subscribe at yahoogroups.com.

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