Tonight I shared about the author of the famous hymn "Amazing Grace"...John Newton.
We hear this song sung or played at so many functions but a lot of people are not aware of its history.
John Newton was born in 1725 in London, England.
His father was a shipmaster.
His mother died just before John's 7th birthday.
His father remarried two years later.
John spent two years in a boarding school and then at age 11 went to sea with his father.
In 1743 Newton was forced into the service of the Royal Navy.
He tried to defect and was punished in front of a crew of 350.
Newton was stripped to the waist and tied to the railing and received
a flogging of eight dozen lashes and reduced in rank to seaman.
Disgraced and humiliated Newton contemplated murdering the captain
and then throwing himself overboard.
Later while on route to India, he transferred to a slave ship bound for West Africa.
The ship carried goods to Africa and traded them for slaves to be shipped
to England and other countries.
Newton caused problems on this ship as well,
so he was left in West Africa with
a slave dealer where he was subjected to mistreatment and abuse.
He was rescued, and on the way home a severe thunderstorm overtook the ship he was in.
As the ship was filling up with water quickly, John cried out to God to spare his life.
This began his conversion to Christianity, however Newton continued to work in the slave trade.
"I cannot consider myself to have been a believer in the full sense of the word,
until a considerable time afterward."
John Newton continued in slave trading until 1754 when he suffered a stroke.
Newton studied and became a priest in June 1764.
He was known for his pastoral care.
William Wilberforce sought his advice about leaving politics.
Newton encouraged him to stay in Parliament and "serve God where he was".
(Free card from Little Birdie Blessings.)
This was the front of the postcard I gave the ladies.
In 1788, thirty four years after retiring from the slave trade, Newton broke
his silence by writing a pamphlet called, "Thoughts Upon the Slave Trade"
John Newton lived to see the passage of passage of the Slave Trade Act in 1807.
He died seven months later.
Amazing Grace was written in this vicarage and was published in 1779.
It is the most famous of all the hymns.
(This is the back of the postcard)
Here is a beautiful rendition of Amazing Grace by Celtic Woman.
There is a movie called Amazing Grace. Here is the trailer for it.
An excellent movie by the way.
Aren't you grateful for God's grace in your life?
I know I am.
None of us deserved God's grace.
We have all done things that we are ashamed of.
It doesn't matter what our background is or what our experiences in life have been.
We all need God's grace.
So be encouraged today.
It is God's grace extended to you that saves you, keeps you, and uses you for His glory.
Such an amazing grace!
How sweet the sound.
Linking up here: