Song Stories: ‘Take the name of Jesus with you’

By Lucy N. Adams | Jul 29, 2013
Photo by: Robert Ludlow The view from Inspiration Point looking over the lake and the upright cross.

Thousands of people had gathered for the worship service.

Excitement was in the air and the opening hymn, “Take the Name of Jesus With You,” which is so important to all Christians, was one of the highlights of this special occasion.

The event was the Second General Missionary Conference at the Southern Assembly (which is now Lake Junaluska) on June 25, 1913. All Christians need this reminder that we cannot walk the walk that God has planned for us if it is not empowered with the mighty name of Jesus.

This hymn was first published in 1871 in the hymnal, Pure Gold, edited by music composer, William Doane.  It was first sung during the world-wide Dwight L. Moody evangelistic campaigns. Thousands of people have been blessed during the singing of these powerful words, and it is still a favorite hymn in the present day.

“Take the name of Jesus with you, child of sorrow and of woe.  It will joy and comfort   give you, take it then wher-e’er you go. Precious name, oh how sweet, hope of earth and joy of heaven.”

There are numerous references to the power in Jesus’ name throughout the New Testament.  An exciting story unfolds in Acts 3:1-16.  The disciples, Peter and John, ventured out to obey Jesus and “go into all  the world and preach the Gospel.”

A lame man who had been a beggar since birth asked them for money. He had never been able to stand or walk. But Peter said, “In the mighty name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth stand up and walk.” Everyone who watched was amazed that his legs were made strong and he walked.

Disciples are to continue to obey the teachings of Jesus even though we do not always understand physical healing. Sometimes it does not come in the way we have prayed.

The composer of   “Take the Name of Jesus With You” is a perfect example of an obedient disciple. She was ill much of her life so the words that she wrote have a deeper meaning of faith and full trust in God’s love.

“Despite being a bed-ridden invalid for much of her life, Lydia Baxter was known as a zealous Christian worker. She was born on Sept. 8, 1809 in Petersburg, New York. Shortly after her conversion as a young person, she and her sister were personally responsible for establishing a Baptist church in their home town.

After her marriage, she moved with her husband to New York City, where she continued her Christian service.  Whenever she was questioned about her cheery disposition despite her physical difficulties, she would reply, ‘I have a very special armor.  I have the name of Jesus. When the tempter tries to make me blue or despondent, I mention the name of Jesus, and he can’t get through to me.’ (101 More Hymn Stories   Kenneth W. Osbeck)

Let our commitment be, “Yes, I will take the name of Jesus with me throughout my earthly walk and receive the fullness of His glory when I enter heaven.”