Glory to His Name

gospel song written by Elisha A. Hoffman

commentary by: P.B. Mistretta III

“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn; To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garments of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, the he might be glorified.”  (Isaiah 61:1-3)

While preparing for this commentary, I had to ask myself this most important question – What is it that brings glory to the name of the Lord?  I was immediately reminded of this Scripture in Isaiah.  This is the Scripture (vs. 1 and 2) that Jesus Christ read from in the beginning of His ministry in the synagogue in Nazareth.  Jesus closed the book, sat down, and then said, “This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.” (Luke 4:21)  In essence, he was proclaiming Himself to be the Messiah that the Jews were looking for.  He was proclaiming His very purpose of coming to earth in the flesh and ultimately the purpose of His sufferings on the cross.

Much can be said about the glory of the Lord and as to what it is that brings glory to God.  For the sake of this message, we will be true to this gospel song and concentrate on the salvation of the soul. Jesus Christ came to bring liberty to those in captivity to sin, to heal their broken hearts, to open up their spiritual eyes, and to release those who are bound from the prison house of sin. These are the good tidings (gospel, good news) that the meek in heart gladly receive.  The result of this glorious salvation includes that they are righteous and holy before and in Him, by His work of “planting” the believer in His death, burial, and resurrection.  All of this is for God to be glorified.  It is His work in the believer and it is to His glory.  This work of righteousness in the heart of the believer is the heart and the foundation of the gospel.  

Many of the believers of the nineteenth century understood this.  It was in the 1800’s that our nation experienced what is now called in history as our Second Great Awakening.  This Awakening resulted in the greatest period of gospel hymns ever written during the period of the nineteenth century.  It was the “holiness” preachers of the late 1800’s that gave birth to the Pentecostal movement of the early 1900’s that spread across this nation and around the world.  

It is sad today that many in the “full gospel” circles, as well as many others, have left the foundation of the pure gospel of Jesus Christ that was built for us in the 1800’s and early 1900’s.  Most today have totally left the foundation of the gospel and call themselves sinners, and some even use that title unashamedly as a badge of honor.  This leaves those in a position where God cannot be glorified in them.  How can God be glorified in a people who do not believe in the purpose of Calvary and call themselves sinners, who say that none are righteous, and who have not been liberated from their captivity to sin?

Elisha A. Hoffman (1839-1929), has given us several songs including, ďAre you washed in the Blood?," "Is it Not Wonderful?," "Leaning on the Everlasting Arms," and "Glory to His Name.”  I believe it is safe to say that he knew and understood the foundation of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Let us “see” His message of full salvation in this glorious gospel song.



Vs. 1     Down at the cross where the savior died,  Down where for cleansing from sin I cried,  there to my heart was the blood applied.  Glory to His name.

The songwriter gets right to the heart of the gospel in verse one of this song.  In this first verse, he lets us know three major facts about the gospel – That our Savior died on the cross, that it is there that we have cleansing from sin, and that this is accomplished when He applies His blood to our sinful hearts.  There could be no clearer “statement of faith” than in what has been said in this simple verse of this gospel song.  

Now, before one says, “Yes, I know all of this,” let me caution you.  It is quite evident today that many are not hearing the blood and cross of Christ being preached from our pulpits, and many of those who are hearing it are hearing a distorted message.  It has been brought out in another commentary, that I recently visited a large “fun” church, and that in a “salvation” message, not one time was the cross of Christ mentioned or the fact that Jesus even died.  

It is said that in order for a people to forget certain facts about history, all it takes is for the facts not to be presented to the people and the space of two generations.  We certainly are seeing this in our public schools, where God has been forced out, history books have been rewritten since 1934, and the religion of secular humanism is being pushed.  This has resulted in a generation that has a distorted view of American history and our Founding Fathers, a distorted view of morality or basically no morals or amoral, and instead of having schools that teach from the Bible and teach morals as they did for over 300 years in America, we now have a public school system that shows a disdain for Christianity and the Bible, and they think that that is constitutional and normal.  

And, we can also see this happening in our churches.  The cross and blood of Christ, sanctification, and freedom from sin was all that the “holiness” churches of the 1800’s preached and sang about.  As stated earlier, it was the foundation that God used to bring the Pentecostal movement.  However, slowly but surely over the past century, there has been less and less of the blood and cross preached, as more and more garbage has entered the Church.  Today, we have a whole movement called the “seeker sensitive movement,” that is gaining in popularity across America.  This movement does not teach doctrine in their services and does not sing any gospel song that mentions the blood because it might offend some people.  The subject of sanctification used to be the most written about subject in the church in the late 1800’s.  Today our “Christian” bookstores are filled with “self help” books and books on “angels.”  Oh, how far have we fallen!

Thank God we have these gospel songs as evidence as to what they preached, believed, and sang about in their time, and this gospel song, “Glory to His Name,” is one of their finest. The songwriter establishes the fact that it is at the cross where we are to go for cleansing from sin.  It is a matter of historical fact that Jesus was crucified between two thieves outside the walls of the city of Jerusalem on a hill called Mount Calvary as recorded in Luke 23:32.  However, it is what He accomplished in His death on the cross that is of extreme importance to us.  Hebrews 9:28 tells us that Jesus was “once offered” to bear the sins of many.  1Peter 2:24 says that Jesus bore our sins in His own body on the cross.  

The modern church has backslidden from the truth of the gospel to the point today where they believe that the sacrifice of Jesus Christ upon the cross did nothing more than forgive sins.  It leaves them in a place where, if sanctification is mentioned, it is a progressive work that will never be totally accomplished until Jesus Christ returns.  This thinking makes void the work of Calvary.  I have even heard “Pentecostals” tell me that the sacrifice of Jesus did nothing more than to give us access to the Father so that we can get forgiveness every time we sin.  This is blasphemy.  The blood of Jesus did more than just forgive sins that are past.  The blood of Jesus freed us from sin.  People who believe that Jesus only forgives sins are living under Old Testament theology.    

Neither by the blood of bulls and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.  For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh:  How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?”  (Hebrews 9:12-15)

Jesus’ blood is the holy blood from the Lord of Heaven, and it does more than just forgive or cover our sin – it takes it away and frees us from the power of sin.  Notice that the songwriter says, “cleansing from sin I cried,” and that “there to my heart was the blood applied.”  The perfect sacrifice of the body and blood of Jesus takes the sin nature out of the heart and even purges our conscience, which is something that animal blood could never do.  The blood of Christ cleanses us from the inside – out.  1John 1:7 tells us that, “If we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another [those who are also walking in the light, or in Him], and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.”  1John 1:9 tells us that he not only forgives us of our sins, but also cleanses us from all unrighteousness.  Tell me, if he forgives us of our sins and cleanses us from all unrighteousness, and makes us the righteousness of God in Him, then where is the unrighteousness, sin, or sin nature?

Romans 6:6 tells us that the “body of sin” was destroyed with Christ when our “old man” was crucified “with” or “in union with” Him.  The “old man” and the “body of sin” of Romans 6:6, the “body of this death” of Romans 7:24, and the “body of the sins of the flesh” of Colossians 2:11, are all synonymous terms with “the sin” or “the sin nature.”  The sin nature was destroyed at the cross of Christ, and it is faith in that finished work that appropriates that work in us, and frees us from sin, and makes us His child.

The word translated “destroyed” in Romans 6:6 in the Greek means, “to render entirely idle (useless), to do away, abolish.”  It is the same Greek word used four other times in the New Testament for the word “destroyed” or “destroy.”  In 1 Corinthians 15:26, death is the last enemy to be “destroyed.”  In II Thessalonians 2:8, Jesus shall “destroy” the wicked with the brightness of His coming.  In Hebrews 2:14, Jesus “destroyed” the power of Satan by the power of His death.  It is clear from these Scriptures that also use the same Greek word for “destroyed” in Romans 6:6, that the sin nature is not “in a dormant state” in those who are “walking in victory,” as some teach, but that it was totally destroyed by the holy blood of Jesus.  The Scriptures clearly teach that we do not have “victory over sin,” but freedom from sin by faith in the finished work of Calvary.  “Saved from,” and “freedom from,” are common terms used throughout the New Testament.  He cleanses the heart from all unrighteousness.  He separates us from sin and the sin nature and cleanses and purifies our hearts with His precious blood.



Vs. 2     I am so wondrously saved from sin,  Jesus so sweetly abides within,  There at the cross where he took me in.  Glory to His name.

“And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin.  Whosoever abidith in him sinneth not:  whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him.  Little children, let no man deceive you:  he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous.  He that committeth sin of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning.  For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.  Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.  In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil:  whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.  (1John 3: 5-10)


The phrases "in Christ, "in Him", and "in whom," are found over one hundred times in the New Testament.  The believer of the gospel who is “born of God,” is placed in Christ and Christ is in him. The beloved apostle John tells us of the message that was “heard from the beginning.” This message says that in Christ is no sin, but he does not stop there.  “The message that was from the beginning,” also states that “if” we are in (abide in Him) Christ we also have no sin and we do not commit sin.  The word translated “commit” in verse nine does not mean practice as many teach today and as you may find in your Bible margin.  The word “commit” comes from the Greek word that means “a single act.”   

The Apostle Paul in 1Corinthians 6:9-11, in Galatians 5:19-21 and in Ephesians 5:3-6, gives us a list of the sins of the flesh in which he says, “they which do [commit] these things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.”  In other words Paul is saying the same thing John is saying.  If one is “in Christ,” he is righteous even as He is righteous and he walks in the Light, and does not commit sin.  This list includes adultery, fornication [any type of sexual sin including lusting in the heart towards another], homosexuality, all uncleanness, hatred, murder, drunkenness, wrath, strife, and revellings [partying attitude that is so prevalent in America, instead of prayer and sober mindedness].  This list also includes covetousness which in not a committed act of sin, but which can lead toward committing sin.  Jesus, in rebuking the Pharisees for their seemingly outward good appearance said that inside they were like “ravening wolves.” (Matthew 7:15)  Jesus said that if one looks at another with lust in the heart that he has already committed adultery. (Matthew 5:28)  John tells us that if you hate your brother you are a murderer, and that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him. (1John 3:15)  Every covetous man is an idolater, every person with a lustful heart is an adulterer, and every hater and racist is a murderer.  That is the Word of God.

However, the prevailing thought about sin in the modern church paints a much different picture than
the one that Jesus Christ, and the Apostles Paul and John painted.  That is, of course, if they mention sin at all.  Most that do mention sin seem to deny the Word of God and excuse it for their experience.  The modern thought on salvation is that Jesus comes into your heart after repeating a “sinner’s prayer.”  He then goes to work on the inside of you with the help of the Holy Spirit to help you to get victory over sin.  They say that it may take some time for the Holy Spirit to give you victory over lust, nicotine, foul language, gambling, etc., and that sanctification is a process that will never be fully reached until Jesus returns.  I have heard prominent “Pentecostals” say that a Christian can still struggle with drugs, drinking, and all types of sexual immoralities.  This is an abomination and flies in the face of everything that the New Testament has said about sin.  Such thinking and preaching contradicts the Gospel of Jesus Christ and makes null the cross and blood of Jesus to cleanse, wash, purify and sanctify from all sin.

E. A. Hoffman and the holiness preachers of the nineteenth century did not struggle with the Word of God or with this glorious gospel.  He boldly writes and documents for all future generations to read, sing, and enjoy -  “I am so wondrously saved from sin, Jesus so sweetly abides within,” and he ties it all together to the work of the cross when he concludes verse two with “There at the cross where he took me in. Glory to His name.”

   

Vs. 3     O precious fountain that saves from sin,  I am so glad I have entered in.  There Jesus saves and keeps me clean.  Glory to His name.

“For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water.”  (Jeremiah 2:13)

“In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness.”  (Zechariah 13:1)

“But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water.  And he that saw it bare record, and his record is true:  and he knoweth that he saith true, that ye might believe.”  (John 19:34-35)

“And he said unto me, ‘It is done.  I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end.  I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.’ ”  (Revelations 21:6)

Zechariah prophesies of a fountain that would be opened up for sin and uncleanness.  This fountain was opened when Jesus was scourged, beaten, and sent to the cross to be crucified.  It is recorded that the Roman soldier pierced the side of Jesus, and that blood and water issued out. The old-time gospel songwriters mention the fountain and the fountain of blood in their songs.  William Cowper, in 1799, wrote the song, “There Is a Fountain,” in which the first verse says, “There is a fountain filled with blood Drawn from Immanuel’s veins, And sinners plunged beneath that flood Lose all their guilty stains.”  

Yes, there is a fountain and it is filled with blood and water, and that fountain, as E.A. Hoffman opens with in verse three of this gospel song, is a “precious fountain” that “saves from sin.” Zechariah prophesied of a fountain for sin and uncleanness.  This fountain was opened at Calvary, and now the victorious and resurrected Savior invites all to drink of the “waters of life freely.”

However, the modern church world is doing exactly what Jeremiah prophesied of.  They have forsaken the pure Gospel of Jesus Christ.  They have believed in “another” gospel that can hold no
water.  It is a gospel that promises forgiveness, but leaves one in a struggle with sin.  It is a gospel
that promises new life, yet it produces a people without the life of God, because the Scriptures teach that God will not share His life with sin and uncleanness.  They have forsaken the gospel that was preached in the eighteen and early nineteen hundredths, and have replaced it with a “gospel” that produces something that is impossible and what they call “sinful Christians.”  They say that we are all sinners. They say that Paul’s Roman 7 experience is the normal Christian experience.  They say that a Christian’s life is a constant life of sinning and repenting.  

The Church of Jesus Christ is a glorious church.  Jude concludes his stirring epistle with these words, “Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy.”  The songwriter says that he entered into this life and was saved from sin by the precious fountain, and that it is there that he not only saves but also “keeps me clean.”  Paul, in Romans 5:2, says that it is the “grace wherein we stand.”  Peter, in 1Peter 5:12, calls it “the true grace of God wherein ye stand.”  

We do not teach, however, that once one comes to Christ that he can never lose his salvation.  This is not the teaching of Scripture and such teachings have caused many to stray.  Colossians 1:22-23 says that we were reconciled to God, “In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreprovable in his sight:  If we continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel…” Hebrews 3:14 says, “For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end.”  Galatians 5:1 says, “Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ has made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.”  Paul exhorts us in 1Timothy 5:22 to “keep thyself pure.”  How do we keep ourselves pure?  We keep on believing the gospel.  We continue in the faith.  We study the Scriptures and become grounded and settled in Him.  We enter his presence with the blood of Jesus and “be sober and watch unto prayer,” as Peter exhorts us to do in 1Peter 4:7.   As long as we are abiding in Christ, the holy vine, He keeps us pure, clean, and holy and ready for His coming.

     

Vs. 4     Come to this fountain so rich and sweet.  Cast thy poor soul at the Savior’s feet. Plunge in today and be made complete.  Glory to His name.

“And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power:  In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ.”  (Colossians 2:10-11)

“For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.”  (Hebrews 10:14)

The songwriter has been wondrously saved from sin by entering into that precious fountain provided for us at the cross.  He is now trusting in the finished work of Calvary to keep him clean.  He also extends an invitation to those who are in need of a glorious Savior, and invites them to, “cast thy poor soul at the Savior’s feet,” and to “plunge in today and be made complete.”  He says that it is a “fountain so rich and sweet.”  He does not short-change its power.  He says that it has the power to make the repentant soul complete.

The Apostle Paul said that we are complete in Him.  He likens the work of the blood and cross to a circumcision of the heart that cuts out the sin from the heart by the circumcision of Christ.  The body of the sins of the flesh (sin nature) is destroyed, cut out, and done away with in the believer, and therefore, the believer is made complete.  The great gospel song “At the Cross,” says in its chorus that the “burden [sin] of my heart rolled away.”  He becomes a child of God.  He is placed in Christ where there is no sin, and Christ is ruling and reigning and keeping Him pure.  The commandments of God are now written on his heart, therefore, he no longer covets, thus fulfilling the tenth commandment and the only commandment that does not have to have an outward manifestation.  He has been “perfected” by believing in the offering of Jesus Christ upon the cross. That word “perfected” means “made complete,” in the Greek.  It speaks of an act of creation – not a process.

 



Chorus:      Glory to His name.  Glory to His name.  There to my heart was the blood applied.  Glory to His name.

 

   
Many say that it is prideful and arrogant to say that one if free from all sin.  However, one who is truly freed from all sin and all unrighteousness, is a very humble person.  They understand that it is all a work of the finished work of Calvary and not of themselves.  All they did was to simply obey the gospel by repenting and believing it.  They realized their pitiful sinful state and put their trust in the crucified Christ alone to "redeem them from all iniquity."  They realize it is all His work and nothing of their own.  They can proclaim along with the Apostle Paul, "But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me and I unto the world." (Galatians 6:14)


“And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof:
for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; … Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and honour, and glory, and blessing.  And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.”  (Revelations 5: 9, 12-13)