Amazing Grace sheet music

Amazing Grace, what is the sound?

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What is the grace of God? A slave trader, who became an abolitionist. A curser, who became a preacher. A sinner, who became a saint.
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The story of a Christian from the colonial era shows us a picture of the grace of God at work. It shows us the Gospel truly, and his life serves to be a wonderful teaching on the grace of God.

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“Amazing grace, how sweet the sound,”

An alcoholic slave trading rapist gambler, rich from exploiting others, who spoke largely in expletives and curses, who enticed others to sin in his same ways, was on a sinking ship.

Death was at the door.

“If this will not do, the Lord have mercy on us,” he said, speaking the Lord’s name in vain.

What is deserving here?

Life or death?

Should he die in the ship, or should he be saved?

“That saved a wretch like me!”

What if I told you this man was a pastor?

He was a poor speaker, but hundreds of people gathered to hear him speak nonetheless.

He wrote letters that were treated as family heirlooms.  

He was an early abolitionist who fought for the end of the slave trade.

Unless you’re familiar with the story, which I was not until recently, it would be hard to believe that this could be anything more than legend.

“I once was lost, but now am found,"

The answer is; pastor or not, this man truly deserved death.

Yet this sinking ship managed to make it to shore.

The cargo that was aboard kept it afloat for weeks as the crew starved until eventually they hit shore.

"Was blind, but now I see.”

Only one person on that ship died.

When he breathed the name of the Lord in vain, he realized that his heart had truly asked for mercy from God.

“‘Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,"

His life changed.

When he hit shore, he was a man other than the man who left the docks on that ship.

"and grace my fears relieved.”

Yet why did he not die?

Because he cried out to the Lord, and the Lord heard him.

This is the Gospel, my friends.

“How precious did that grace appear, the hour I first believed!"

What a beautiful story it is, is it not?

An absolute wretch, a terrible person.

Someone that if you had met, you would think “Man, is there a special place in hell for him.”

He received the grace of God.

And if you met him afterwards, you would think “Man, is there a special place in heaven for him.”

“Through many dangers, toils, and snares,"

You may not know this story, but you surely know who this is.

John Newton, the author of the classic hymn, Amazing Grace.

This is his story of coming to Christ.

This is yet one example of the grace of God at work.

This is what the Gospel looks like in reality.

John Newton saw hell at sea.

"I have already come;"

Yet John Newton saw the grace of God at shore, and his life was forever changed.

Many more lives were forever changed through his preaching, teaching, writing, and hearts are still stirred awake through the lyrics he wrote.

Every speaker of the English language knows him, either by name or through his writings.

"'Tis grace has brought me safe thus far..."

The grace of God is best taught by being shown, and the grace of God is seen in the life of John Newton.

This is not just Newton's story, but more generally it is Paul's story.

It is my story.

If this is not your story, it can be your story, no matter how far gone you are.

The grace of God is greater than any sin you may commit.

The power of God to transform your heart, is more powerful than your heart's power to hate God.

I look forward to seeing Newton in eternity, along with the rest of my brothers and sisters who once were lost wretches, but now are found.

“...and grace will lead me home.”

“John Newton on the Christian Life,” written by Tony Reinke used as reference.

Amazing Grace
by John Newton

Amazing grace! (how sweet the sound)
   That sav'd a wretch like me!
I once was lost, but now am found,
   Was blind, but now I see.

'Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,
    And grace my fears reliev'd;
How precious did that grace appear
   The hour I first believ'd!

Through many dangers, toils, and snares,
    I have already come;
'Tis grace has brought me safe thus far,
    And grace will lead me home.

The Lord has promis'd good to me,
    His word my hope secures:
He will my shield and portion be,
    As long as life endures.

Yes, when this flesh and heart shall fail,
     And mortal life shall cease,
I shall possess, within the vail,
    A life of joy and peace.

The earth shall soon dissolve like snow,
    The sun forbear to shine;
But God, who call'd me here below,
    Will be for ever mine.