How Great Thou Art


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How Great Thou Art is about the Greatness of God.
How different this world would be without God!
Without God, life has no purpose or hope.
Heaven does not exist - humanity has no eternal destination.
Without Moral Law there is no right or wrong.
Humanity will wander in the dark and ultimate oblivion.
“Life without God is like an unsharpened pencil – it has no point.”
-Billy Graham
Life with God:
*You see the world differently.
*You live in the world differently.
How Great Thou Art is all about the awe and wonder that God has Created.
Beautiful scenes of nature that fill the mind and soul with tranquility provides sense of connection to a Much Greater Whole.
The visual delights of the natural world showcase the Beauty and the Wonders of God's Wonderful World that absorb the mind with an inner sense of peace and contentment.
God is the Designer and Architect of everything.
"For every house is built by someone, but God is the Builder of everything."
Hebrews 3:4 (NIV)
God is the Alpha and the Omega - the first and last letters of the Greek Alphabet
There is but One God - the Creator of Heaven and the Universe.
When all you have left is God, you have everything.
He is our Father - the Life-Giver, our Refuge and our Strength.


Background

How Great Thou Art
In 1885, Carl Gustaf Boberg (16 August 1859 – 7 January 1940), a pastor, editor, and member of the Swedish parliament wrote the words of a poem entitled, “O Store Gud” which was published in 1891 in Witness of the Truth, the weekly newspaper that Carl edited.
He was enjoying a walk one day when a thunderstorm suddenly appeared out of nowhere.
After the storm was over, he looked out over the bay and heard a church bell in the distance.
There was such calmness after the storm that the words to the beautiful gospel How Great Thou Art began to form in his mind - O Lord, my God, When I in awesome wonder, consider all the worlds Thy hands hath made.
This poem, titled O Store Gud (O Great God) was later translated in German.
In 1927, it was published in a Russian version of the German text and then translated by Stuart K. Hine, the English missionary to Ukraine who sang it at an evangelistic meeting with his wife.
He then translated the first three stanzas into English, which was sung at an evangelistic meeting in England during World War One.
He published the first three verses (in both English and Russian) in 1949 in Grace and Peace, a Russian evangelistic paper which Hine edited and later wrote the fourth verse as a triumphant message of eternal life.

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Early Life

How Great Thou Art
Carl Gustaf Boberg was born in Mönsterås, Kalmar County in Småland, the son of carpenter Nils Petter Jonsson Boberg and Hedvig Gustava Jonsdotter.
He worked briefly as a sailor and served as a lay minister in the Mission Covenant Church of Sweden.
Boberg studied at the church's school in Kristinehamn from 1879 to 1882 and was then a preacher for the Mönsterås Mission Association from 1882 to 1889.
He was also the owner and editor of the free-church magazine Sanningsvittnet ('Witness of the Truth') from 1889 to 1916 where he published his own books and poetry through the magazine's publishing house.
Boberg was a preacher at Flora Church from 1890 to 1892 and Immanuel Church from 1892 to 1909, both in Stockholm.


Who is God?

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How Great Thou Art
God is:
Eternal: Everlasting
Omnipotent: Unlimited power at every point of time and space.
Omniscient: All-Knowing
Infinite: Without limits
Omnipresent: Present everywhere at all times
God Revealed Himself Through:
Creation - His Creative Majesty is all around us - just look around, above and beyond.
His Word (Holy Bible)
His Son, Jesus Christ
The Hebrew (Jewish) prophets - through visions and dreams God sent them to proclaim His Message to people on His behalf.
The Jews were the first people to worship the One and Only True God by the Law of Moses, in the midst of universal polytheism.


Seeking God

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How Great Thou Art
A heathen philosopher once asked a Christian, "Where is God"? The Christian answered, "Let me first ask you: Where is He not?"
-Aaron Arrowsmith
In the Bible, light is a symbol of holiness, goodness and hope.
By contrast, darkness is associated with evil, sin, and despair.
If you are seeking God - you will find Him everywhere!
Who can hide in secret places so that I cannot see them?" declares the Lord. "Do not I fill heaven and earth?" declares the Lord.
-Jeremiah 23:24
Two Roads of Life
There are two roads of life:
1. The world's path.
2. God's Path.
The Heavenly Kingdom of God is a major theme throughout the four Gospels of the Bible.
When Jesus said, "My Kingdom is not of this world" (John 18:36) He was referring to God's Heavenly Kingdom, the eternal home of our dear Lord, Jesus Christ, our Blessed Virgin Mary, the Saints, the Prophets and all God's people.
Christ's Resurrection from the Dead showed that death is not the end but rather the Gateway to eternal life in God's Kingdom in Heaven.
Pathways that lead to everlasting life begin when we have:
1. Unconditional trust in God
2. Follow the Path of the Good Shepherd, Jesus Christ, Who leads His flock to greener pastures - everlasting life begins on earth and continues in Heaven (Romans 6:4).

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Power of God

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How Great Thou Art
God's Power Can:
*Influence people through love and compassion
*Guide the conscience to what is right and what is wrong
*Govern what is important in life through values
*Provide the positive choices to live a wholesome existence.
"One thing I seek - to live in the Presence of the Lord - all the days of my life and, to behold God's Beauty".
- David the shepherd boy who became the second king of Israel.
Throughout the centuries, humanity has always found comfort and peace of mind in the warm embrace of God.
Christian life is lived in relationship with God through Jesus Christ.
Faith illuminates the imagination to "see" beyond this world.
Faith provides that feeling of inner-strength to move mountains in adversity.
There is a "reason for being" in this life and the ultimate, eternal destiny in God's Heavenly Kingdom.
Biblical values provide a spiritual and ethical culture for how to view the world and interact within it.
Close-knit families and communities are brought together through the everlasting values of love for God and their neighbor.
God's Laws of Life bring the benefits of forgiveness and salvation - Jesus Christ says, when we forgive others, our Heavenly Father will forgive us.
We go to church to hear the Voice of God through Liturgy and the Sacraments and to find Jesus, the Good Shepherd who leads His flock to greener pastures.


Quotes About God by Famous People

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How Great Thou Art
David, the shepherd boy who was destined to become the second King of Israel is a great example of someone who knew God as his refuge.
“My salvation and my honor depend on God; He is my mighty rock, my refuge."
-David
Sir Isaac Newton (1643 - 1727)
Sir Isaac Newton, an English mathematician, astronomer, theologian, author and physicist who is recognised as one of the most influential scientists of all time and a key figure in the scientific revolution said, "This most beautiful system of the sun, planets and comets could only proceed from the Counsel and Dominion of an Intelligent and Powerful Being".
William Paley (1743 – 1805)
William Paley trained for the Anglican priesthood at Christ's College, Cambridge in 1763 and was appointed a fellow and tutor of his college in 1766.
His 1794 book A View of the Evidence of Christianity was required reading at Cambridge University until the 20th century.
His analogical (comparison) design argument in his Natural Theology states that if we were to discover a watch in a natural environment then, due to its order, complexity, and purpose, we would reason that an intelligent designer created it.
The universe, William Paley argued, exhibits the same order, complexity, and purpose, so it too, must have been Created by a Creator.
Even if we had no prior knowledge of how the universe or a watch was made, we would still conclude from their order, complexity, and purpose that they both have intelligent designers.
"The marks of design are too strong to be got over. Design must have had a designer. That designer must have been a person. That person is GOD".
- William Paley
Abraham Lincoln (February 12, 1809 – April 15, 1865) the 16th president of the United States from 1861 until his assassination in 1865 who led the United States through the American Civil War and abolished slavery.
"I can see how it might be possible for a man to look down upon the earth and be an atheist, but I cannot conceive how he could look up into the heavens and say there is no God."
Louis Pasteur (27 December 1822 – 28 September 1895) French chemist, pharmacist, and microbiologist renowned for his discoveries of the principles of vaccination, microbial fermentation, and pasteurization.
"A little science estranges men from God, but much science leads them back to Him".
Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis
C.S. Lewis (1898 – 1963) was an Oxford literature don and a Fellow and Tutor at Magdalen College 1925-54.
In 1954 he became Professor of Mediaeval and Renaissance Literature at Cambridge.
He was an atheist for many years and described his conversion to Christianity, in his book, Surprised by Joy: The Shape of My Early Life (1955).
His theological book, Mere Christianity states that as Natural Law exists, God must exist, since humans did not invent it.
Mere Christianity also states that to understand Christianity and the coming of Christ, one must understand the calamity which arises from humanity's failure to keep moral law ("rule of right and wrong").
The first step to being a Christian is to accept Jesus Christ and to try to be more like Him.
A true Christian will achieve a level of perfection through physical life.
Final perfection will occur through the soul in the eternal Kingdom of God.
Wernher Von Braun (1912–1977)
Wernher von Braun brought America into the space age and laid the foundation for cell phones, satellite radio, the Internet, GPS and Doppler radar.
Yet, the Technological Revolution did not diminish his faith in God.
Evidence for Creation
Dr. von Braun believed that scientific advances actually provided evidence of intelligent design.
He said: ‘I find it … difficult to understand a scientist who does not acknowledge the presence of a superior rationality behind the existence of the universe’.
"The scientific method does not allow us to exclude data which lead to the conclusion that the universe, life and man are based on design. To be forced to believe…that everything in the universe happened by chance—would violate the very objectivity of science itself. Certainly there are those who argue that the universe evolved out of a random process, but what random process could produce the brain of a man or the system of the human eye?"
James Irwin (1930 - 1991) - American astronaut
James Irwin, an American astronaut and Lunar Module pilot for Apollo 15 which was launched on 26 July 1971, was the eighth person to walk on the Moon.
He had an unusual encounter with God and Jesus Christ while conducting experiments on the moon that changed his life forever.
He experienced the Presence of Jesus Christ and was overwhelmed by the feeling of God’s Presence. "I felt the power of God as I'd never felt it before."
He came back from the moon to a life serving God and sharing his faith in Jesus Christ.


How Great Thou Art

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Oh Lord, my God
When I, in awesome wonder
Consider all the worlds Thy hands have made
I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder
Thy power throughout the universe displayed
Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee
How great Thou art, how great Thou art
Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee
How great Thou art, how great Thou art
And when I think that God, His Son not sparing
Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in
That on the cross, my burden gladly bearing
He bled and died to take away my sin
Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee
How great Thou art, how great Thou art
Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee
How great Thou art, how great Thou art
When Christ shall come, with shout of acclamation
And take me home, what joy shall fill my heart
Then I shall bow, in humble adoration
And then proclaim, my God, how great Thou art
Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee
How great Thou art, how great Thou art
Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee
How great Thou art, how great Thou art
How great Thou art, how great Thou art


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